Hopes for more affordable homes

SHAUN LOWTHORPE Hundreds more affordable homes a year could be built in Norfolk after a tie up between two housing associations. Broadland Housing Association and the Orbit Group are to amalgamate their Norwich-based teams to form a new Broadland Orbit Partnership.

SHAUN LOWTHORPE

Hundreds more affordable homes a year could be built in Norfolk after a tie-up between two housing associations.

Broadland Housing Association and the Orbit Group are to amalgamate their Norwich-based teams to form a new Broadland Orbit Partnership.

The deal, which does not involve any job losses or formal merger plans, will see the creation of the largest developer of affordable homes in Norfolk and Suffolk, and supporters believe it will also deliver savings by creating larger economies of scale when it comes to buying building materials and other supplies. However, both bodies will retain their existing independent identities as landlords.

Andrew Savage, development director for Broadland Housing, who will have day-to-day control of the new body, said the move would see an extra 150 low-cost homes a year built in Norfolk and North Suffolk - an increase of nearly 40pc.

The partnership will now have the potential to develop 400 new affordable homes each year across Norfolk and Suffolk, with 75pc of these available for rent and the rest being new-build Homebuy for shared ownership.

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The creation of a "bigger player" would also help secure more grant funds from the Housing Corporation to build more homes," added Mr Savage.