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£1.4m project will turn Boscombe bedsits into family homes
BOURNEMOUTH Council is to plough ahead with plans to buy houses of multiple occupancy in Boscombe and turn them into self-contained flats.
The scheme, part of the Homes for Boscombe strategy, aims to reduce the number of bedsits by converting them into individual flats which will provide high-quality permanent accommodation for families and couples in the area.
The cabinet agreed this week to acquire and convert a small number of identified properties using funds from the Housing Revenue Account and future “right to buy” receipts.
The total cost of the scheme will be £1.408m, made up of £825,000 to purchase the properties, £450,000 refurbishment costs and £133,000 for design, planning, project management and other costs.
A report to members said the council’s corporate plan had identified the provision of more affordable housing and the general regeneration of Boscombe as a priority.
The officer said there is a real need to provide accommodation for families on the housing register. He said demands come from: n Existing tenants such as couples occupying inappropriate properties which could be released for families or those in overcrowded accommodation.
n Couples or families currently living in private or temporary accommodation which is unsuitable for their needs.
The development mix will be dependent on the size and layout of the properties acquired but is likely to be two bedroom flats with a smaller number of one bedroom units.
Cllr Chris Wakefield, of Boscombe West, said: “It is quite innovative that we are looking to purchase HMOs and change them back into family accommodation.
“It will have a positive effect on that neighbourhood by redressing the balance with regards to the number of single people in that area and introducing a more static group of people.”