Albyn on track to deliver new homes target thanks to unique private finance deal

Calum Macaulay
Calum Macaulay

Albyn Housing Society is poised to deliver on its pledge to build an additional 750 new homes for the region by 2020 after netting £30 million in new funding.

Arranged by NatWest Markets as sole agent, the funding secured through from BAE Systems Pension Funds Investment Management Ltd will enable the housing association to leverage up to £37m in additional grant funding from the Scottish Government.

Combined, the sum will support the development of the first 500 homes in communities including Inverness, Drumnadrochit, Poolewe, Aviemore, Nairn and Conon Bridge – a significant contribution towards plugging the shortfall of homes across the Highland Housing Register area.

The ambitious plan will also provide a welcome boost to the local construction industry, having already resulted in the procurement of almost £20 million in contracts in the year ended 31 March 2017.

Speaking of the deal, Calum Macaulay, chief executive at Albyn Housing Society, said: “Our mission is to build sustainable communities, and this means that we must urgently plug the gap that continues to grow – at present over 7,000 households are listed on the Highland Housing Register.

“If the Highland region is to continue to thrive and retain its place amongst the best places to live in the world, we need more homes for the people who wish to live, work, learn, raise families and contribute to the future of the area.”

Douglas Russell, chair of Albyn Housing Society, added: “After more than a few years of very limited development, we are once again in a position to build a significant number of desperately needed new affordable homes.

“This new funding will not only provide working capital to support new development, it will allow us to leverage new grant funding and make our vision for the Highlands a reality.”

As part of Albyn Society’s development plan, it has already completed the development of 74 new homes in Inverness and Ross-shire during the year ended 31 March 2017, and is on track to complete 113 homes by the end of 2017. A further 175 new homes have been approved for completion during 2018. This includes a mix of homes for social rent, mid-market rent and shared equity purchase.

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