The scope of this work is flexible and we don’t currently know how long this will take. We appreciate that this is taking longer than we originally anticipated however this investigation needs to be done thoroughly before a decision on the estate can be made.
We will continue to communicate with you in the meantime and letters will be sent to all tenants and homeowners with important information.
The Council reviewed a number of estates with older stock that do not meet modern standards, particularly in relation to sustainability. Ekin Road was identified as a part of this review and the following reports relate to this:
B9485 Options Appraisal – produced by Potter Raper
Achieving Net Zero Carbon in our Housing Stock – produced by Feilden & Mawson
Refurbishment/retrofitting would include considerable works to the properties to improve the energy efficiency. Some further information can be found in the Potter Raper report on the options available. Extensive work to upgrade heating systems or structural work would be very difficult to undertake with residents living in the home. It is likely that the residents would need to move out whilst the works took place.
We are not yet sure how refurbishment would address other issues like accessibility, security or space standards.
Many tenants and homeowners registered their interest in being part of a Steering/Liaison Group. The first meetings took place in December 2022. If you would like to find out more about this group, please get in touch. We are keen to continue to engage with the community throughout this process and will write to the residents with any important events or decisions.
We encourage anyone with questions or concerns to contact us directly by emailing email@example.com or calling 0800 193 1565.
There have been some works undertaken to the flat blocks in recent years including to the structure, the communal flooring, lighting, canopies, roofing and door entry.
Leaseholders may have paid up to £13k – this varies slightly, depending on the time they have had their leasehold for and the advice under their Right to Buy purchase.
There are significant costs to refurbishing the three storey flat blocks. This would have to include cladding, structural repairs, adding level access to the flats above ground floor, improving security etc. There is uncertainty that modern standards could be achieved through this. Another option would be partial redevelopment (demolish the 6x three storey blocks only) This would reduce the number of Council homes we could provide on this site. There is no external funding for replacement units.
Council tenants would be required to move from their homes. The options are broadly speaking:
Bidding on other properties using Homelink;
Moving into one of our other new build properties (we would aim for like for like/similar property, unless resident wishes to downsize);
It is often the case that people do not wish to move twice due to the general stresses of moving – alongside any potential impact on school location, getting to / from work etc. however returning to the completed development is an option.
Residents would receive ‘emergency’ status on Homelink. They would also have a contact for advice and guidance on the bidding process and the financial support available. Regeneration Policy
The Council has not made special provision yet for people to move early. Transfers are currently governed by existing Council policy. This may be reviewed to enable early moves if there are sufficient positive indications for redevelopment.
Tenants: No, we don’t re-imburse you for work you have done on your home; however you may be entitled to financial support in ensuring your new home meets a similar standard.
Leaseholders: Your valuation will reflect the current condition of your home.
The financial support for leaseholders and freeholders includes a compensation payment in addition to the value of the property. This is 10% for resident property owners and 7.5% for non-resident property owners.
Leaseholders have an obligation to offer flats to the Council if they place them on the market. The Council does not have an obligation to buy. The council has re-purchased a small number of flats which were placed on the market by leaseholders. This is subject to available resources. A new decision would be required to offer the option of immediate re-purchase to all leaseholders.
It is likely that tenants of leaseholders are on Assured Shorthold Tenancies and that in the event of redevelopment proceeding leaseholders/landlords will secure vacant possession prior to transfer of the property to the Council. The Council’s approach is to respect the fact that the leaseholder is the tenant’s landlord and to work with the leaseholder to minimise the disruption caused. Private tenants would be able to seek housing advice from the council should their landlord issue a S.21 notice. At this point, the council can discuss the options available based the household, finances etc.
The Council will arrange for a market valuation to be made and you will have 4 weeks to decide if you would like to accept the offer. Once a decision has been taken purchases can proceed subject to normal legal procedures. The Council seeks to work with leaseholders to resolve issues that arise.
The Council will seek as far as possible to resolve situations by agreement. The Council does have powers to compulsorily purchase properties. There are important procedures and safeguards regarding the exercise of this power.
We would have a separate discussion around what would be a suitable location and financial circumstances. There are options available including shared ownership and equity shares – but further discussions would be required on preferences / what is feasible.