Local Authorities will be made aware that ODPM wish to maximise the PFI credits available and therefore will favour schemes only where the inclusion of elements of new build offer significant and demonstrable benefits to the project. Schemes will be assessed according to criteria that include value for money and the contribution made to securing ODPM’s Decent Homes target. Of those responding, overall 92.5% were in favour of making the amendment so that new build could be included within the scope of a HRA PFI scheme. view publisher site : Adelaide Property Valuers
This option was very popular with local authorities and many indicated that it would make them consider PFI for their housing plans. PFI will have a role as part of our strategy and the flexibility to include new social housing within a HRA PFI is welcomed’. Many of the respondents also indicated that they believed this option would improve market confidence and help expand the market. Kingsturge, who submitted a bid for the NE Derbyshire scheme, stated that ‘as a potential bidder in the market with considerable success in other PFI sectors, we have withdrawn from the HRA PFI market until these rules have been reformed.
A tenant’s association disagreed with the proposal and cited the reason as ‘Impact on greenfield sites and more money should be spent on improving existing properties’. However ODPM do not envisage greenfield sites being used for new build and see, at least initially, the new build being restricted to replacement build and thus brownfield sites. However Hexham Community Association were pleased with the proposal and said that ‘it is about time that Councils were allowed to build new houses as the ones they have got are very old fashioned, in poor condition and they spend a lot of money constantly repairing them’.
Two main issues were raised in regard to the possible impacts, those of the decanting of tenants and the possible increase of Right to Buy sales. The consensus was that even though they acknowledged the disruption it would cause tenants, the benefits associated with the provision of new, well designed homes would far outweigh any potential disadvantages of being decanted.