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Plans for 50 new council homes in Lincoln by 2020

Council Leader Ric Metcalfe (centre) in March on the Wellington Street building site, where the first five council homes in 20 years are being built, with (L) Shaun Porter, Commercial Manager at Lindum and Councillor Richard Coupland

The City of Lincoln Council plans to borrow an additional £5.25 million over the next seven years to build around 50 new council homes by 2020.

This means that around £750,000 would be spent on building council homes every year between 2013 and 2020.

Changes to the national council house finance system meant local authorities could take on their own housing debt and begin to self-finance their housing.

The City of Lincoln Council has paid out £24 million to buy the independence to run all of its council homes by itself.

Having done this, the City of Lincoln Council can now keep all of the rent it collects locally and borrow against its future rental income, up to a maximum cap fixed by central government.

The authority started to build five new council homes this year on Wellington Street which should be available for council tenants by Christmas this year.

There are over 3,000 people on Lincoln’s waiting list for council housing, with some waiting almost five years.

Now a team at the council is identifying possible sites for development and creating a procurement strategy.

To keep costs low, council-owned land would be used wherever possible.

City Councillor Peter West said: “Now that we have full control over our own housing account, we have the opportunity to increase the supply of affordable housing through our council homes, which is one of our key priorities for the city.

“I’m looking forward to seeing the first five homes completed on Wellington Street this year, and to further developments in the coming years.”

The Housing Revenue Account Business Plan will be seen by the council’s Executive in July, when a full report will be available.

Source: City of Lincoln Council