Winchester City Council's Housing Development Strategy 2014/15 – 2018/19

Winchester City Council owns around 5,000 council houses providing a variety of good quality homes for our tenants. Successive governments have discouraged local authorities from building new houses preferring to see housing associations providing new ‘affordable’ homes. Now, for the first time since the 1980’s, the Council does have the ability to build new housing stock. This has come about because we can now use surpluses within the Council’s Housing Revenue Account (HRA) to build new homes rather than pay them to the government.

We have worked out the amount we can spend on new homes by putting together a business plan for the HRA. First and foremost this provides for maintaining our existing stock and ensuring that our tenants have the good quality homes they pay for. The business plan demonstrates that even after allowing for this, there is money available to build approximately 30 new homes a year for the foreseeable future.

In this strategy we sets out what the Council intends to build, for whom and how we will ensure that we deliver high quality affordable homes in a cost effective way. We will set out our overall aims for the next five years and what added value and initiatives our development programme can bring to the local environment and economy. The Strategy will form the framework within which Winchester will evaluate development opportunities and decide whether to proceed with a project.

This strategy will evolve as plans evolve and will be formally reviewed on an annual basis.