Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Mayor urged to restrict Olympic home rents

The mayor of London is facing calls to exempt homes built on the Olympic Park from the government’s affordable rent programme.

Labour assembly member Nicky Gavron said letting homes at up to 80 per cent of market rents would make the Olympic Park units unaffordable for families with two or more children.

She said: ‘I am very concerned about this because it will affect the social fabric of these neighbourhoods. It will be incredibly difficult for families with two or more children looking for social rented accommodation to afford these rents when they are increased to 80 per cent.

‘The mayor should be doing everything in his power to ensure the Olympics deliver the legacy that was promised and that won us the bid in the first place. If he goes back on this promise he risks creating a no-go zone on the Olympic Park for hard-pressed families by pricing them out of its housing.’

Under the affordable rent programme, landlords will submit bids for development programmes with the majority of new lets expected to be at or close to 80 per cent of market level.

Bids for London will initially be submitted to the Homes and Communities Agency for approval, but from April 2012 investment powers will be transferred to the mayor of London.

The Olympic Park development will include 2,800 affordable homes, which the Olympic Park Legacy Company is considering retaining ownership of.

It also includes a further 1,379 affordable homes in the Athletes’ Village which will be run by the Triathlon Homes consortium of East Thames Housing Group, Southern Housing Group and developer First Base. These homes are are being delivered through an exisiting section 106 planning agreement and the new affordable rent product will not apply to them.

A spokesperson for the mayor said it is up to OPLC to decide on the legacy of the park, including rent levels.

Readers' comments (3)

  • One rule for London and a different one for everywhere else! Everyone can afford 80% affordable rents out of London- no problem!

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  • Sidney Webb

    Tory Mayor acts to restrict profit! - does anyone ever seriously expect to read such a headline?

    Triathlon Homes sanction Mayor of funding barrier - now that's more likely.

    Don't forget the mega-bucks housing association leaders who on this very site lobbied for the right to surcharge their tenants to fund their own empire building, oh and to build a few unaffordable homes. Fortunately, none of the Triathlon group are of the same disgraceful tendancy as, for instance, One Housing, but they will be pressured to conform to the new funding set up and deliver the Shapps style unaffordable housing.

    The Mayor can and must win this for London - and in so doing set the trend for Shapps to be over-ruled and proper affordable housing development funded and restored. The Executives of One Housing and the like, will then have to find other ways to fill their bellies - perhaps concentrating on the better management of their existing stock would be a place to start.

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  • Rick Campbell

    Yesterday ---

    Prince William and Kate Middleton could barely afford to buy a caravan if they depended solely on their salaries, according to one of the Telegraph's most popular stories. The article quotes banking group Santander as saying Prince William's RAF salary of £37,170 means the couple could only obtain a mortgage of £142,000. It found a selection of properties valued at this amount across the country, many of which it described as 'less than regal'. Properties valued at this amount include a two-bedroom bungalow in Windsor which is a rebuilt mobile home, measuring just 50sq ft (4.6sq m).

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