A NEW development which will help residents affected by the under-occupation penalty to downsize has been launched by Chelmsford MP Simon Burns.
Working with Chelmsford City Council (CCC), architects Ingleton Wood and builders, DCH Construction Ltd, the properties in Wheatfield Way, Chelmsford, will provide local residents with six one-bedroom flats for affordable rent.
Following an agreement with CCC, the six properties which the residents have vacated – as they would have been liable to the under-occupation penalty (also known as the ‘Bedroom Tax’) – will be let to those on CCC’s housing register who desperately need affordable accommodation of their own.
All of the properties, which meet a level-three rating of the government’s Code for Sustainable Homes, the Secure by Design Standard and three of the ground floor properties meet the Lifetime Homes Standard, have been built following the redevelopment of one of our former garage sites.
The Wheatfield Way scheme - which received £107,000 in funding from the Homes and Communities Agency via the HCA’s Disposals Proceeds Fund - meets our aim of creating sustainable communities as well as providing high-quality affordable homes for local people.
Chair, Ursula Heelis, said: “Not only have we built six new, warm, affordable homes for local people who were under-occupying their previous home, we have released six homes with eight unused bedrooms for CCC housing register applicants. This supports our belief that by thinking innovatively and working together with CCC we can house more people in desperate need of a home of their own.”
Chelmsford MP Simon Burns commented: “My dealings with CHP show that it is a trailblazer in social housing, as these magnificent homes demonstrate.
“We know that there is a huge amount of pressure on housing and Chelmsford has not escaped it. Providing homes by turning garages into flats to help local people is fantastic and anything which encourages downsizing is to be applauded.”