Council agrees further funding to purchase properties for homeless families

Bristol City Council has agreed to continue to invest in a fund that is being used to purchase properties to house homeless households.
The scheme will see around 30 additional one and two bedroom properties purchased that will then be available at ‘affordable’ rents to homeless households from Bristol.
It aims to give people a route back to independent living and reduce the number of individuals and families facing homelessness in the city.
The properties will be managed as private lets by Real Lettings – a management arm of one of the council’s existing partners, homeless charity St Mungo’s.
The original scheme was agreed at Cabinet in November 2015, with the first round of investment delivering 72 properties.
The council will now invest a further £5million in the National Homelessness Property Fund (NHPF Real Lettings Scheme), extending the life of the project until 2025.
Households are able to stay in the accommodation for two to three years and, during this time, are helped to make progress in their lives and find more permanent settled accommodation in the private sector.
The scheme helps to limit the number of households placed in high cost emergency accommodation due to the lack of affordable housing in the city.
Councillor Paul Smith, Cabinet Member for Homes and Communities said: “This scheme has made an important contribution to the supply of affordable rented housing in Bristol.
“The current investment has been well received by homeless households, with tenancies being successfully sustained and households helped to manage their tenancy, build skills and knowledge and maximise their incomes through access to training, employment and welfare benefits.
“We are investing in these properties to ultimately save money and give people better quality housing solutions, reducing the amount we have to rely on expensive temporary accommodation.
“We are not currently able to meet housing need adequately due to the lack of affordable housing in the city, and this investment forms a key part of our commitment to reduce homelessness and provide better opportunities for people across the city.
“We recognise that this is a temporary solution as we move towards our target of building 800 affordable homes per year from 2020.”
All properties acquired comply with the Decent Homes Standard. Properties are refurbished prior to being let to homeless households.