Edinburgh mid-market rent initiative reaches first 250 tenants
More than 250 families have moved into quality affordable homes thanks to an initiative developed by the City of Edinburgh Council’s mid-market rent partnership and Scottish Futures Trust.
Now in eight sites across the city, Edinburgh Living’s 250th tenant moved into their new home in Craigmillar last month.
Let and managed by Lowther Homes, part of Wheatley Group, Edinburgh Living has also launched its new website this week which will provide information about the initiative and help more individuals and families find their new home through links to what homes are available and what is coming soon.
Danielle Beatson, 42, who has recently moved into a three-bedroom home with her partner and three children, said: “We love our new home; it’s in the perfect area and is so spacious. The community is great; it’s a really family-friendly area, and my children are often outside playing with friends.”
Danielle added: “Our landlord was selling the home we were renting and we were struggling to find another suitable property at short notice. Mid-market rent was a fantastic, affordable option for us. The application process was simple, and we were able to move in quickly after applying.
“We feel so settled and secure now; my partner and I are really happy, and so are the kids, which is brilliant.”
Launched in Jan 2019, supported by the Scottish Government, the council set up Edinburgh Living to address the lack of affordable housing available in Edinburgh by offering mid-market rent homes to households on low to middle incomes that were struggling to access property, either to purchase or rent, on the open market. The initiative is also supporting homelessness prevention, working together with Council services and Lowther Homes to raise the profile of mid-market rent as an option for lower income households at risk of homelessness.
The council and Scottish Futures Trust have strong ambitions to continue to grow Edinburgh Living, with an acquisition target of 500 homes by the end of 2022, and the long-term aim to provide 1,500 new mid-market rent and market rent homes over the next few years. The council is proactively identifying more homes to achieve this ambition, delivering well-built, well-managed and energy efficient new homes through its own housebuilding programme.
Councillor Kate Campbell, Edinburgh’s housing, homelessness and fair work convener, said: “Hitting this big milestone and now having 250 family households in safe, warm and affordable homes, with more homes being identified to double that figure by the end of next year is just fantastic. Also hearing what a difference these bright and modern homes are making to people’s lives is the reason we started this programme in the first place.
“Making sure everyone has access to an affordable and energy efficient place to live has long been our priority. We have ambitious plans to grow the number of properties we own which we’ll do by purchasing homes, and by building homes through own housing development programme, delivering 20,000 affordable homes by 2027.
“As a council we’re also committed to ending poverty, becoming more sustainable, while helping to foster greater wellbeing and inclusion, and so Edinburgh Living is just one of the ways we’re doing that for our residents and the city of Edinburgh.”
Councillor Mandy Watt, housing, homelessness and fair work vice-convener, added: “It’s a real joy to have families moving in and settling into their new homes through Edinburgh Living. And it’s great to see the new website provide more information about the partnership and signpost those looking for a mid-market rent home to what is currently available and under construction.
“We now have homes in eight locations which puts Edinburgh Living homes in three quarters of the city. These homes provide quality, stable accommodation to families, improving the diversity of communities and helping with the regeneration of parts of Edinburgh.”
Christa Reekie, director development and housing at the Scottish Futures Trust, said: “As infrastructure experts, we’re always looking for new and collaborative ways to maximise the delivery of affordable housing and boost the impact they have in communities right across Scotland.
“Edinburgh Living is a case in point – a joint venture that is working towards the delivery of 1,500 much-needed, affordable and market rent homes in Edinburgh. Today’s milestone marks a significant step in the programme that is now benefitting 250 families and is increasing the supply of high quality, energy efficient homes for many years to come.”
Heather Voisey, Lowther Homes managing director, said: “We’re delighted to mark this important milestone in our partnership with Edinburgh Living. Mid-market rent flats offer much-needed affordable housing in sought-after locations, and it’s great to see the 250th tenant move in. We look forward to continuing to let and manage affordable Edinburgh Living homes across the city.”
Edinburgh Living has homes across eight locations including Clermiston, Hailesland, Pennywell, Greendykes, North Sighthill, Royston, Dumbryden and Craigmillar.