COUNCIL areas across Scotland are to share more than £3.2 billion in grant funding over five years to deliver more affordable homes, the Scottish Government has announced.
It means that local authorities will benefit from an increase of more than £541 million on the previous five-year allocation – an uplift of more than 20%.
Housing secretary Shona Robison said, “We have already delivered more than 102,000 affordable homes since 2007. Building on this, our aim is to deliver 100,000 affordable homes by 2032, with at least 70% of these for social rent.
“Meeting this ambition will require continued collaboration across the private and public sectors. I’m pleased to be increasing significantly the available affordable housing grant funding for council areas to help with this important work.
“The five-year allocations will provide the certainty and assurance the housing sector needs to deliver the ambitious affordable homes target set out in our Housing to 2040 strategy.”
The City of Edinburgh Council’s convener for housing, homelessness and fair work, councillor Kate Campbell, said, “This announcement of £233.8m funding for housing in Edinburgh from the Scottish Government over the next five years is hugely welcome. Having certainty over future funding puts us in a strong position to continue building that pipeline of social and affordable homes that we so desperately need.
“This will allow us to plan ahead and acquire sites, design and develop new homes and appoint contractors. And not only do we have certainty, we also have an increase of almost £44m from our baseline allocation over the last five years.
“Having recently met with the cabinet secretary to set out the challenges in Edinburgh, and the further investment we need, this is a positive response.
“We’ve also consistently received in-year allocations of extra funding when other local authorities have had underspends in their grant. Over the last five years this has amounted to about £40m. Our aim is to continue making the case for any future underspends to come to Edinburgh by making sure that we continue our strong track record on delivery of homes.
“And, because the need for permanent, secure and affordable housing in our city is so great, we’ll also continue to make the case for additional funding for Edinburgh from the national housing budget. But having certainty for the next five years, and an increase in funding, puts us in a fantastic position just now, and gives us a really strong platform to build from.”