Thousands of aging council homes across the capital are set to be renovated and repaired, thanks to a £145 million funding boost from the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson.
From replacing dilapidated roofs, doors and windows, to rewiring, and updating outmoded bathrooms and kitchens, the funds will be used on internal and external repairs to help improve living conditions for thousands of local authority residents, across nine London boroughs.
Improvements will soon be underway in Barking and Dagenham, Hackney, Haringey, Tower Hamlets, Camden, Lambeth, Kingston upon Thames, Southwark and Sutton, with the funds secured by the Mayor through the Government’s ‘Decent Homes Backlog Funding ’ programme. In addition to these borough improvements, the Mayor’s RE:NEW support team is ensuring plans are in place to make council-owned homes as energy efficient as possible.
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson said:
“As London’s population continues to grow at an unprecedented rate, and we strive to double the number of new homes being built across the capital, maintaining the quality of London’s essential existing housing stock is vital. These improvement works, in those homes in most urgent need of repair, are essential to ensure a decent quality of life for thousands of Londoners.”
Housing Minister, Brandon Lewis said:
“The Government is giving London this significant funding boost, which will improve the lives of thousands of council tenants by bringing their homes up to a Decent Standard. And the changes we have brought in to protect leaseholders will help tenants by ensuring the repairs on their home get done without landlords imposing unreasonable charges.”
New government legislation for councils and housing associations will limit the amount leaseholders can be charged for future major repair, maintenance, or improvement works when they are wholly or partly funded by the government. The £145 million funding is in addition to the £821 million share of the Decent Homes programme, agreed with the government and committed to 14 boroughs during 2011-15 to help transform social housing in the worst conditions. As part of the bidding process each borough was required to review the potential for additional building of homes on their estates.
Creating enough good quality homes for hardworking Londoners is one of the Mayor’s top priorities. He is on track to deliver 100,000 new low cost homes over his two terms and has introduced a range of innovative new measures to boost affordable housing, stimulate building and fast track the delivery of thousands of much needed new homes of all types. These include new Housing Zones, Purpose Built Private Rented Schemes and a new London Housing Bank.