Surveyors get back to work as North Lanarkshire Council looks to buy houses

A North Lanarkshire Council scheme to provide more properties for rent has been continuing through lockdown.

Friday, 9th October 2020, 11:00 am
Updated Friday, 9th October 2020, 11:06 am
North Lanarkshire Council surveyor David Maxwell

The council had to put on hold certain parts of its open market purchase scheme earlier this year in accordance with Scottish Government guidance and survey work had to be stopped.

With new working practices now being implemented, the scheme is fully operational again and would-be sellers are being encouraged to contact the council.

Development officer Catriona Arbuckle said: “Prior to lockdown in March, our surveyors were carrying out on average 30 surveys a month, but this had to stop in line with Government guidelines.

“However during this period, we have continued to receive applications and we have been busy identifying potential properties for purchase.

“Our surveyors have put in place rigorous new working practices and we are pleased to be carrying out surveys once again.

“We have also produced a leaflet with information on these new working practices for home owners and estate agents. 

“We have manage to start the purchase process straight away on a number of suitable properties and remain optimistic we can achieve our target of 150 purchases this financial year.

“This will help provide more homes for rent for people in the communities they want to live in.”

The main criteria for the purchase of homes on the open market is:

There is demand for the type and size of property in that area, with the cost of buying and bringing it up to letting standards representing value for money to the council;

Where the purchase of a property will enable the council to take complete, or majority, ownership of blocks of flats making communal repairs easier to complete;

Homes purchased would meet the particular needs of households not currently available in the council stock, e.g. suitable for people with disabilities.

The scheme will assist the council in delivering 5000 additional homes for rent by 2035.

For more information visit www.northlanarkshire.gov.uk/councilbuybackschemes.