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READER LETTER: 'We need to broaden housing provision beyond one housing association'

PUBLISHED: 08:35 29 March 2019

Reader and district councillor Karen Ward says a council-run property company will help ease the district's affordable housing shortage. Picture: Rui Vieira/PA W

Reader and district councillor Karen Ward says a council-run property company will help ease the district's affordable housing shortage. Picture: Rui Vieira/PA W

Archant

I wish to respond to a letter ‘Home truths about the housing crisis’ (North Norfolk News, March 14) regards to affordable housing.

I wanted to ensure that north Norfolk residents have the facts about this important matter.

Victory Housing is one provider of affordable housing in north Norfolk and since its acquisition by Flagship, they will continue to be a significant partner for North Norfolk District Council.

However, Victory have historically also had a significant disposal policy, so the net provision of affordable housing they have been able to provide is much lower than it would first appear.

It makes sense for any local authority to spread its risk across a number of housing providers.

If we want to provide enough local homes for local people, we need a much broader and deeper provision than can be supplied by one housing association.

In addition to homes available for social rent, we also need to increase our stock of good quality, affordable private market rentals with secure tenancies.

We want to offer more shared ownership and greater opportunity for younger residents to get onto the housing ladder through rent to buy schemes.

All of this can only happen if the district council has a suitable legal structure to make this possible - hence the creation of a property company.

This will allow us to partner with a range of organisations, including Victory. We want to make sure that council tax is invested back into our local communities in the interest of all residents. I hope this clarifies the situation.

KAREN WARD

Councillor for Glaven Valley ward and planning and housing portfolio holder

North Norfolk District Council

-What do you think? To share your own views on this issue or others, email nnn.letters@archant.co.uk

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