Housing Executive plans £15.3m upgrades in Antrim and Newtownabbey

Housing. Stock image
Housing. Stock image

Single households followed by small families and older persons dominate the Housing Executive’s waiting list in the Antrim and Newtownabbey area, councillors have heard.

In an update on plans for the next 12 months and review of previous year’s investment, the housing authority reported a total of 668 applicants in housing stress at 31 March 2017.

Antrim and Newtownabbey Council was told 1,006 people were awarded homeless full duty status during 2016/17 and 626 homes were allocated to waiting list applicants.

During the next year, the Housing Executive is investing £15.32 million in upgrading and maintaining its properties, supporting people to live independently, increasing the energy efficiency of homes and providing grant aid in the private sector.

Through its landlord and regional services, last year the body invested £25.93 million in the council area; this includes grant aid to Housing Associations for the building of new property to rent.

Colm McQuillan, the Housing Executive’s Director of Landlord Housing Services, said: “The Housing Executive works hard to maintain a good working relationship with Antrim and Newtownabbey District Council and it is important this continues.”

This year in the area, the organisation will spend £8.48 million on planned and response maintenance to its homes, and a further £2.60 million on capital improvements. This will include outside maintenance work to 323 homes and revenue replacements to 173 homes. To address energy efficiency, 223 dwellings will receive heating installations.

It will also support those tenants who need help to live independently in their homes through the provision of adaptations. Last year it spent £440k on works helping people live more comfortably in their accommodation.

During 2017-20, in partnership with housing associations, around 368 new homes are planned throughout the area. In 2017/18 the executive will invest around £2.46 million for housing support services. It currently funds 46 accommodation-based services in the area as well as two floating support services.

Last year the Housing Executive approved 81 disabled facilities grants, 16 repair grants and a small number of home repair assistance grants. Spend during the year was £500K.

Sharon Crooks, Housing Executive area manager, said: “We are committed to investing in the Antrim and Newtownabbey area to improve the lives of people in our communities.”