Springfield Properties signs £15m affordable housing contract with HHA

Springfield Properties signs £15m affordable housing contract with HHA

Innes Smith

Springfield Properties has signed a new contract worth £15.3 million for the delivery of affordable housing for Highland Housing Alliance (HHA).

Supported by funding from the Scottish Government, The Highland Council, and the Highland City Region Deal, the contract will see high-quality and energy-efficient new homes for rent that will attract and retain people who want to work and live in the region.

The contract includes an initial bulk sale of housing, followed by a design and build aspect. This will see Tulloch Homes, also part of the Springfield Group, deliver 75 new homes for mid-market rent (MMR) across three developments in Inverness, Kirkhill and Aviemore.

On completion, there will be 30 high-quality two and three-bedroom homes available in Inverness and Kirkhill. Aviemore is set to benefit from 45 apartments and cottage flats representing a significant offering in the Cairngorms.

The group will receive £4.1m for a bulk sale of housing, which is scheduled to be completed during the current financial year. The design and build phase, which is worth £11.2m, is due to commence in the coming weeks, with the majority of the revenue to be recognised in the group’s next financial year.

Springfield Properties signs £15m affordable housing contract with HHA

Innes Smith, CEO of Springfield Properties, said: “Since reengaging with affordable housing providers, we have been greatly encouraged by the interest that we are receiving. Within the last eight months, we have signed contracts worth c. £40m with local housing authorities and other affordable housing providers. Alongside the design and build contract, we are pleased to have this opportunity to deliver a bulk sale that will support our overall sales rates as well as our focus on maximising cash generation.

“As well as contributing towards the Scottish Government’s ambitious affordable housing targets, these homes will help meet the surge in demand for housing in the highlands with the Inverness and Cromarty Firth Green Freeport expected to bring 10,000 new jobs to the area. Our strong land-holding across the highlands means we are well placed to assist with housing delivery and we look forward to working with HHA to provide these much-needed homes.”

Tulloch Homes will complete the construction of the properties for HHA who will secure tenants and manage the lettings process. A selection of the 20 homes across all three developments are almost complete, with the first residents expected to move in from early 2024.

The construction of the remaining 55 homes will continue throughout next year, with phased move-in dates for residents expected until late 2025.

Earlier this year, the Inverness, and Cromarty Firth Green Freeport (ICFGF) was established. The freeport aims to become a global hub for green energy and is anticipated to create more than 10,000 new jobs in the Highlands alone, as well as attracting over £3 billion in fresh investment. New homes for workers will be critical to support the freeport.

Springfield Properties signs £15m affordable housing contract with HHA

Gail Matheson, CEO at HHA said: “Ensuring that we have purpose-built, high-quality rental opportunities in Aviemore and Inverness is intrinsic to the success of the Highland economy.

“The rental market in the north of Scotland right now is frighteningly pressurised and if we do not prioritise the creation of such homes then the situation will only worsen. By partnering with Tulloch Homes, we are proactively protecting the supply of new rental homes in prime locations that are fairly priced for many families and individuals within the region.”

Sandy Grant, managing director at Tulloch Homes, said: “By introducing MMR homes at three of our flagship developments, we are future-proofing communities and ensuring a vibrant mix of homes. Crucially, we are delivering high quality homes across different tenures, allowing us to create communities that cater to different demands.

“New research recently published by Homes for Scotland (HFS) highlighted the alarming reality that over a quarter (28%) of households in Scotland face one or more forms of housing need. Partnerships such as this are vital to create an inclusive and agile housing system.

“HHA has a proven track record of delivering MMR homes and we’re looking forward to working together as we progress our strategic partnership that aligns with both The Highland Council and Scottish Government’s ambitious housing targets.”

Springfield Properties signs £15m affordable housing contract with HHA

Minister for housing, Paul McLennan, said: “The addition of 75 homes will provide significant benefit across these Highland communities. Our rural and island communities play an essential role in our economy and by keeping people in the area and attracting others to live, we help sustain and grow them.

“Supported by £6.2m grant from the Scottish Government these MMR homes will increase housing options to the area and supplement existing homes for affordable rent and low-cost ownership. Working with partners, such as Highland Housing Alliance and Highland Council, we will continue to support the delivery of a mix of affordable housing options across the Highlands and Islands.”

Cllr Glynis Campbell Sinclair, The Highland Council’s - Housing and Property Committee chair, said: “Affordable and accessible housing is a key priority in the Council’s Programme, and we continue to work in partnership with HHA and Highland based house builders to build a portfolio of housing to improve housing options in key locations, particularly where availability of affordable and mid-market properties is much needed.

“Demand to live and develop business opportunities in the Highlands is high, yet suitable housing can inhibit the growth potential, the three new developments in Inverness, Kirkhill and Aviemore will offer vibrant new opportunities and create diverse housing options within communities.”


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