Legal & General has partnered with Croydon Council to provide 167 homes for families on the housing waiting list. These homes, a mixture of houses and apartments in Croydon and neighbouring Boroughs, will be leased to Croydon Council on a 40-year term, after which time they will belong to the council. Rents will be set at Local Housing Allowance (LHA) levels. The partnership is supported by a €51.6m (£44.6m) investment from Legal & General.
The homes will provide much-needed stability for local families and residents, many of whom have been living in emergency accommodation. The partnership will mean a better outcome for Croydon families in housing need as well as creating around €23.2m (£20m) in savings for the council. With waiting lists for UK affordable homes reaching over 1.3 million, and over 2,000 families requiring Temporary Accommodation in Croydon alone, the company will be creating a blueprint for institutions and the public sector to work together to tackle the UK’s housing crisis.
Councillor Alison Butler, Croydon Council’s cabinet member for Homes and Gateway Services, said: “The council set up Croydon Affordable Homes so hundreds of local families can get good-quality homes with secure tenancies, and Legal & General’s investment will save us around €23.2m (£20m) in loan costs that means we can assist even more families in the long term. At a time when the Government is squeezing how much it funds local authorities, this innovative partnership offers us better value for money than more traditional loans available to councils, and I hope this encourages other councils and financial institutions to follow suit.”
Pete Gladwell, Head of Public Sector Partnerships at Legal & General said: “Our motto “Own Your Own World” is about more than society being able to shape its future through savings. It’s about providing some of the most vulnerable in society with stable addresses to apply for work from, and a kitchen table where their children can study. And it’s about partnerships between forward-thinking institutions and local authorities, which enables them to take control of their finances; with investments like this turning statutory duties, such as the provision of Temporary Accommodation, from revenue drains into revenue generators. Alongside launching our new affordable housing business last year, this investment highlights our determination to innovate within the sector and to work together to address the UK’s chronic housing crisis.”
Eleanor Bucks, Managing Director, Direct Investments and Real Assets, Legal & General Retirement, said: “We are delighted to be partnering with Croydon Council and investing in much needed local housing. We are committed to investing in the UK, particularly where we can play such an important part in people’s daily lives. This is a great demonstration of our purpose to deliver inclusive capitalism, using our assets in an economically and socially useful way. We have been able to support our long term pension commitments whilst improving lives by developing a structure that is beneficial to Croydon Council and its residents.”