City of Wolverhampton Council is set to deliver around 800 new homes over the next four years through its new housing company, WV Living.

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The plan for the company will go before Full Council on Wednesday and, if approved, it will start trading shortly after, backed by up to £40 million of investment through council loans, which will be paid back to the council at a commercial rate.

Wolverhampton currently has sufficient land identified to meet projected housing targets but the council is eager to speed up the building of homes.

WV Living will borrow from the £40 million pot as and when required to fund its costs.

It will repay the council from income made through the sale and rental of homes.

The repayment of the loans will generate additional income for the council, which will be used to support the provision of other council activities and services.

Councillor Peter Bilson, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for City Housing and Assets, said: "The aim is to boost the new build housing market in the city and a very prudent approach has been taken to the WV Living business plan.

"It has been based on the highest industry standards, stress tested, and contingencies put in place.

"It is not there to compete with private sector developers but to add to the housing offer in the city by identifying alternative sites.

"It will also provide new market rented homes for families who cannot afford a deposit to purchase a home, which is not currently available in the city.

"There is a strong belief that a council owned housing company is both viable and offers the best outcomes for the council in terms of strategic housing, income generation, jobs and training opportunities."

Subject to planning approval, the first phase up to 2018, will see around 400 WV Living homes built on council-owned land at the former Danesmore Park Primary School site in Ashmore Park, former Wednesfield High School site, former swimming baths site on Prouds Lane in Bilston, and former Ettingshall School site.

Work is expected to begin in spring 2017.

A quarter of the homes developed will be set aside as affordable council homes.

Full surveys and reports are being gathered for all 4 first phase sites.

  • released: Monday 19 September, 2016