Havering Council has jointly completed a purchase of 82 brand new homes in Romford, to help tackle some of the housing shortage for family-sized homes.

The Leader of the Council, Councillor Damian White and Councillor Joshua Chapman, Cabinet Lead for Housing, along with Patrick Odling-Smee, Director for Housing, and Garry Green from Mercury Land Holdings were on site to tour the site with Nick Langley and colleagues from Hollybrook, on Monday 6 July, where they were officially handed the keys to the high-quality properties.

The new homes, which are part of the Hollybrook Development on Crow Lane, were purchased by a joint venture partnership between Mercury Land Holdings and Havering Council. The new homes range from 1-bedroom apartments to a large number of 4-bedroom family homes.

As part of the purchase, 38 properties (33 four-bedroom and 5 three-bedroom homes) will be used as affordable housing, providing much-needed larger, high-quality homes for bigger families, and reducing the levels of overcrowding in the borough. The remainder will be used for the private rented market, managed by Mercury Land Holdings.

Despite a short delay due to Covid-19 lockdown, the new properties are expected to all be available by autumn 2020, with the first properties available in July.

The purchase comes as part of a wider plan to ensure the Council is responsive to the borough’s changing housing needs, including a programme to buy back former Council properties for use by local families, and plans to deliver high-quality homes the borough through regeneration projects.

Councillor Joshua Chapman, Cabinet Member of Housing, said:

“Whilst our regeneration projects are going to deliver new homes and communities in the future, we have to address the immediate shortage in short-term supply, especially the lack of four-bedroom affordable housing. 

“Purchasing the Crow Lane development will ensure we have a strong stock of good-quality homes for local families across Havering ready to move into now.’’

“I’m really excited about this opportunity, and I’m proud that we’ve been able to take quick action, alongside our regeneration and buy-back programmes, to make sure we can provide for Havering families today.”

Garry Green, Director of Mercury Land Holdings, said:

“Our aim is to provide high quality, well managed homes for local people and Mercury Land Holdings is delighted to have acquired these units.

“Victory Place includes a mix of one, two and three bedroom private rented apartments. All the properties are brand new, high specification units and will give residents more choice and flexibility in the Havering housing market.  Following industry best practice we offer tenancies of up to 3 years, allowing tenants to make longer term plans for living in the borough. Rent also includes all service charges, reduced gym membership and complimentary internet.There will also be some large family homes for sale. More information is available from www.placetocallhome.co.uk

Nick Langley, from Hollybrook, said:

“Hollybrook is delighted to deliver this development in partnership with Havering Council and Mercury Land Holdings. We are pleased to support the ambitious plans of Havering Council to deliver much needed housing in the borough and look forward to working together again in the future.”