Issue - decisions
Home Purchase Assistance Loan Scheme
The Director of Regeneration sought Cabinet approval for the introduction of an equity-based ‘Home Purchase Assistance’ Loan. The loans would be available to support sustainable homeownership and would initially be targeted at ‘Housing Market Renewal’ new build schemes. A property appreciation loan of up to 30% of property value would be offered to potential buyers. That would assist those persons for whom a level of home ownership was a viable option but who were unable to access sufficient finance due to the current restrictions on mortgage lending.
The report also requested delegation to the Director of Regeneration to determine other residential property, owned by the Council, which might be included within the scheme. Examples of such property might include those ‘Housed’ properties which were proving difficult to sell.
If approved, the new loan product would be offered with immediate effect, using part of the Council’s allocation of Growth Point funds totalling £740,000, as agreed by Cabinet, 25 June 2009 (minute 29 refers). It was proposed to use the existing contract with ART Homes Ltd, as the managing agent for this product, through a variation to the existing contract for Equity Relocation Loans and Equity Renewal Loans.
The loan product would only be offered to new applicants beyond 31 March 2011 if alternative funding was then available and a review of the mortgage market deemed it necessary.
The Leader of the Council emphasised that the money used for this scheme would all be from Government grants.
(1) That the introduction of a Home Purchase Assistance Loan Scheme, within the terms set out in the report and the policy document appended to the report, be approved.
(2) That Cabinet agrees to prioritise Sevenoaks (formerly ‘Fiveways’), 8 ‘Housed’ properties and 3 Tudor Road decant properties acquired as part of the ‘Fiveways’ redevelopment scheme.
(3) That delegated authority be given to the Director of Regeneration for determination of future availability of Home Purchase Assistance Loans for Council-owned dwellings that are to be sold.
(4) That delegated authority be given to the Director of Law, Human Resources and Asset Management, to vary the existing contract with ART Homes Ltd to deliver the Home Purchase Assistance Loan Scheme until 31 March 2011.