Thursday, March 2, 2023

News: Council consider changes to fill Rotherham town centre housing development


Shared ownership options at Rotherham Council's multimillion pound housing scheme in the town centre could be removed in a bid to get the new properties filled. The move comes during Empty Homes Week 2023.

The first home opened in February 2022 as part of an ambitious £30m+ development of more than 170 homes across three key town centre sites, heralding the next stage in Rotherham town centre's transformation.

The ‘Trilogy Collection’ includes Westgate Riverside, Wellgate Place and Millfold Rise and properties have been made available for sale, affordable rent and through shared ownership.

With the houses for sale being snapped up alongside new rental tenants, shared ownership appears to be a less popular option for some of the apartments.

Council documents show that at Wellgate Place, 11 one and two bedroom apartments in Portland House remain unsold.

The authority is now considering changing the tenure of 11 shared ownership homes to affordable rent.

Wellgate Place, on the site of the former Henley's garage on Wellgate, consists of two apartment blocks containing 34 homes and 20 two and three-storey terraced houses, with a value of £8.5m. It was set to provide a mix of 23 Council rent, eight market sale and 23 shared ownership.

Letting agents Crucible Homes describe the share ownership properties: "These stylish and modern apartments offer an open plan kitchen and living room with floor to ceiling windows. They also benefit from either one double bedroom and bathroom with shower above the bath, or one double and one single bedroom. The properties offer storage rooms and allocated parking."

Under shared ownership buyers can purchase between a 25% - 75% share in the home. They will then pay rent on the percentage of the property not purchased along with a service charge. It continues to be a less popular way on to the housing ladder nationally, especially with Government-backed initiatives like Help to Buy providing equity loans for new build properties.

This week is national Empty Homes Week 2023. The number of empty properties in Rotherham remains below this national average, at less than 3%. Nevertheless, the Council recognises that even a small number of empty properties can have a negative impact on neighbouring properties and wider communities.

Rotherham Council also works with private homeowners to help them understand how to bring empty properties back into use and ensure they maintain their properties while they are vacant, so they do not pose a risk to the public. This could include advice about how to market property or accessing support through the Council’s probate researchers.

Within the last year, the Council’s Empty Homes Officer has dealt with 199 enquiries and brought 27 empty properties back into use.

Rotherham Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing, Cllr Amy Brookes, said: “We’re urging anyone who is struggling to bring a residential empty home back into to use to contact us, likewise if you know of an empty property and would like to see it become a home again. We have a dedicated team that want to work with owners to offer support, information, and advice. We know the reasons for properties remaining vacant can be complex and myriad.”

Trilogy Collection website

Images: RMBC


Anonymous,  March 2, 2023 at 1:53 PM  

This seems to make sense, and a sensible measure to bring empty properties into use... albeit brand new ones that never been occupied previously. Can someone clarify, are these the properties that RMBC built which are being sold for less than what they cost to build?

It is concerning that with more residential lined up for the town centre that these properties are struggling to be sold. Perhaps residential isn't the golden goose when it comes to town centre regeneration that RMBC has led us to believe.

Anonymous,  March 2, 2023 at 3:24 PM  

Would you pay to live in a cesspit!

Anonymous,  March 2, 2023 at 3:30 PM  

If you build quality,people will be interested,build ghettos,and obviously they're not.Been saying some time ,the poor quality builds RMBC is allowing to be built in town centre is a mistake,you need quality like the glass building on main Street side of river,to get people interested,I note theyre alway full ,either with owners or people renting privately.Tbe brick monstrosities they've built are a disgrace and eyesores!

Anonymous,  March 2, 2023 at 10:30 PM  

If you read the article the houses that are unsold are those that are shared ownership. There had been no problem selling outright so removing g the shared ownership element makes sense. A lot of buyers are put off by shared ownership if they can afford to buy outright.

Unknown March 3, 2023 at 8:06 AM  

What do they expect, Shared ownership is a awful way to get on the property ladder. Its very hard to deal with the 3rd party.

Make them affordable and people will buy them, and don't sting them with massive service charges either

Anonymous,  March 3, 2023 at 9:06 AM  

The glass building is quality? Really? When was the last time you looked at it up close? It's absolutely filthy and looks a lot older than it actually is, It's in shocking condition for a fairly recent building. It wouldn't surprise me if it gets knocked down within the next decade. Give me brick any day.

As for shared ownership, I personally wouldn't go near it.

Anonymous,  March 3, 2023 at 1:21 PM  

Think you need to wipe your glasses!It by far the highest quality construction in town for brick constructions,show me any large multiple storey developments in any other towns city's,it's not how modern developments look in 21st century ,You must live in a time warp!😁

Anonymous,  March 3, 2023 at 1:25 PM  

The kepel wharf building,won awards for it's design,if Rotherham was a forward looking place,the whole Riverside would have these type of builds along its length..not the monstrosities being built on Sheffield road.

Anonymous,  March 3, 2023 at 3:45 PM  

So are you saying that the Keppel Wharf building is not filthy and poorly maintained? My glasses are a lot cleaner than that building.

I don't care if it's won awards, I personally think it looks awful, It might look better if somebody cleaned it.

I didn't mean brick multi storey developments, because that would be stupid. I was stating my preference for the style of development that the article is about compared to Keppel Wharf.

I totally get your point about building larger developments along the riverside and I'm not against multi storey or modern developments, The old Market building across the road looks really good. Also the building being converted to flats on main street/domine lane look great, combining the past with the present. Lets have something with a bit of character. I don't particularly want Rotherham to look like any other town or city, I want it to have an identity of it's own. Keppel wharf is a just an identikit lump that looks out of place.

Anonymous,  March 3, 2023 at 5:05 PM  

That building looks dated already & has started to discolor. Those flats at Riverside in Sheffield looks decent enough for brick

Anonymous,  March 3, 2023 at 9:19 PM  

Shared ownership is a con and they are struggling to sell. So why keep building, or even build in first place without determining viability.

If the shared ownership don't sell who we putting in them

Anonymous,  March 4, 2023 at 4:00 AM  

Some very valid and well articulated observations. Over the heads of some on here of course.

Anonymous,  March 5, 2023 at 9:39 AM  

Just 'your''views of what 'you' want,just 'your 'opinion, doesn't mean 'your'right!

Anonymous,  March 5, 2023 at 2:53 PM  

I never said I was, I was just giving my opinion. Is that not allowed? Do I have to agree with your ‘correct’ opinion?

Anonymous,  March 5, 2023 at 4:00 PM  

“Just 'your''views of what 'you' want,just 'your 'opinion, doesn't mean 'your'right!”

Isn’t that every post on here? What’s your point? Or do you just not like reading opinions that differ from your own?

And by the way, it’s “doesn’t mean YOU’RE right”

Anonymous,  March 6, 2023 at 5:13 PM  

There's a lot of angry people on here. Chill peeps.

Anonymous,  March 8, 2023 at 7:01 PM  

Yes, it's all the rage

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