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£22million invested in improvements to city council’s housing stock

Published on Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Homes on Saffron Estate

HOUSING repairs, maintenance and adaptations costing £22m are being made to Leicester City Council’s housing stock in a major programme of improvement works.

The city council is halfway through a programme of investment as part of a package of measures aimed at improving homes across the city and bring them up to modern standards.

It is being carried out to ensure that all council properties meet its decent homes standard, ensuring adequate bathroom, kitchen and boiler facilities, as well as wiring, electrics, roofing and windows.

Works involved in the Housing Revenue Account budget for 2019/20 include:

£4m on replacing or improving kitchens and bathrooms

£3.4m on new central heating boilers

£1.76m on rewiring and electrical upgrades

£1.2m on disabled adaptations

£1m on improved fire safety

£750,000 on replacing and repairing roofs

£725,000 on connecting properties to the district heating scheme

£350,000 on replacing soffits and facias

£300,000 on safety improvements

£223,000 on concrete repairs

£150,000 on new windows and doors

£100,000 on loft insulation

In the last six months alone, the city council has fitted nearly 600 new boilers to council homes, along with 179 kitchens, 141 new bathrooms and rewired 364 properties, as part of a rolling programme of work.

The city council has also invested £21m in buying up 140 properties since January 2018 – known as acquisitions – to bring them into use as part of the city’s housing stock.

Further investment is also being made on a programme of installing sprinklers in high-rise apartment blocks, costing £1.35million in 2019/20. This has already been completed at Maxfield House, St Peters, with work due to start in summer 2020 at St Leonards Court, Clarendon Park.

Lift installations, further property acquisitions and the planned demolition of Goscote House in Highfields, which will cost about £2.8million, are also included in the programme of work, along with a range of smaller ongoing maintenance works.

Leicester assistant city mayor for housing and education, Cllr Elly Cutkelvin, said: “These works are an ongoing investment in making sure council housing in the city meets our decent homes standard.

“It further demonstrates our ongoing commitment to be the city’s best landlord, because we offer affordable rent, security of tenure and investment in making sure rental property is of a high standard.

“We have an ongoing commitment to improve all our housing stock over the coming years, including ensuring all properties have a bathroom for life by 2030, an upgraded kitchen by 2036, and renewed electrics every 30 years.

“In some cases, the work we’ve carried out has involving replacing appliances and wiring which have simply reaching the end of the natural life span, while in other cases the works will improve energy efficiency and ensure that homes meet the newer, more stringent standards.

“The combination of improvements made in this rolling programme of work will ensure that tenants can be confident that all council-owned homes in the city are decent, safe and well-equipped.”