Givan announces first tenancies under the Rent to Own scheme

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Monday, January 30th, 2017
landlordCommunities Minister Paul Givan has welcomed news that 22 households are now on the path to home-ownership through the new innovative Rent to Own scheme. Five households have moved in to their new homes and another 17 households have been accepted onto the scheme and will be moving into their new homes over the next few months. The pilot scheme, which has been made possible by a £12.5 million investment by the Department for Communities, is targeted at assisting lower income households onto the property ladder.
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Jan End 2017It does this by providing customers with the opportunity to rent a new home of their choice for up to three years and, at the end of the rental period, receive a rent rebate of 25% towards a mortgage deposit to purchase the property. Speaking to Newry Times, Minister Givan said, “I am delighted that 22 individuals and families now have a new home, or will have a new home in the near future, as a result of the Rent to Own pilot. Rent to Own represents a new way of thinking and shows how my Department is supporting the aspirations of people who want to get on to the property ladder. “Increasing housing supply is a key priority for my Department. My officials continue to look for new ways of meeting housing need across all tenures. The success of the Rent to Own scheme pilot so far offers key learning opportunities for how we design and deliver future initiatives,” he added.
The scheme is being exclusively delivered via OwnCo Homes, a subsidiary of the Northern Ireland Co-Ownership Housing Association, and aims to deliver 90 affordable new homes across NI over the next two years. Mark Graham, Chief Executive of Co-Ownership Housing said, “Rent to Own offers tenants a better option than simply renting, with no prospect of a return. It starts with a commitment to a three year payment plan with a down payment of £2,500 and an inbuilt 25% rebate on rent paid. He added, “Together they build up a lump sum to be used towards purchasing the property. We really are thinking differently about renting.”
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