Private Property Leasing Scheme - Do You Have Property To Let?
28th December 2004
COUNCIL ENCOURAGED WITH RESPONSE
TO PRIVATE PROPERTY LEASING SCHEME
Highland Council's Housing Service has been greatly encouraged by its public appeal earlier this month to private property owners to consider leasing their properties to the Council.
Members and officials have welcomed the response from 24 people from throughout the Highlands who have contacted Housing staff to enquire about the Council's private leasing scheme.
From the 6th December, the Homeless Persons (Unsuitable Accommodation) (Scotland) Order 2004 made it illegal for local authorities to accommodate families and pregnant women in bed and breakfast accommodation unless in emergency situations up to a maximum of fourteen days. To try to meet this legislation the Council put out an appeal via the media to the public highlighting the private leasing scheme.
Following coverage in the Highland media, the Council has received 9 enquiries at the headquarters office, relating to 12 properties available for leasing, one new enquiry in Lochaber Area, 2 enquiries in Nairn, 1 enquiry in Badenoch and Strathspey, and 12 good offers in Inverness Area, and these enquiries are still coming in.
Councillor Margaret Davidson, Chairman of The Highland Council's Housing and Social Work Committee said: "The response is really encouraging and we will be following up the contacts made with all the folk that have come forward and seeing what we can do with their properties.
"It is good to see the whole Highland Community taking responsibility for homelessness in the Highlands. People are beginning to realise that there are many reasons why all sorts of people become homeless, it can happen to anyone, and it is good that we are working towards tackling this in Highland. The Council's private leasing scheme is not well known about and the more people that know and consider it the better."
Tracey Urry, The Highland Council's Acting Head of Housing Strategy said: "The key problem that we are facing is the sheer lack of suitable accommodation and we are keen to encourage private property owners across Highland to consider leasing their properties to the Council to help tackle this shortage."
"Not many people realise that the Council's Housing Service can offer private leasing arrangements and I would urge anyone who has vacant property to consider leasing through The Highland Council and to contact us at our Area Housing Offices. We will look at any property regardless of size."
The Council's Housing Service can offer the following terms to private owners who lease their properties to the Council:
* Three to nineteen year leases.
* Agreed rents guaranteed to increase by the annual rate of inflation + 1% each year.
* Management of tenants.
* Properties guaranteed to be maintained to accepted standards throughout the period of the lease.
Anyone interested should contact The Highland Council's Housing Service on 01463 702052 and leave their details.
Works on the Inverness West Link Stage 2 were suspended on the 24 March 2020 following COVID-19 guidance from the Scottish Government. The Highland Council has been in dialogue with Contractors RJ McLeod and has agreed that essential works are required to begin to address safety issues but primarily the works to be undertaken are to provide for physical distancing and encourage active travel, walking, wheeling and cycling as part of, and to augment the successful Spaces for People project.
The COVID-19 small business and self-catering grant schemes, set up to help companies stay in business during the coronavirus crisis, have now paid out £59,628,750 to over 5500 Highland businesses. The Council has now processed 99% of the applications received since the grant schemes opened.
Blueprint for safe return to classes. Detailed guidance on practical measures to allow schools to re-open on 11 August has been published.
The Highland Council is assessing the implications of the First Minister's announcements made on the 21st May about the first stage relaxation of lockdown, concerning teachers and other education staff returning to the workplace during June to prepare for the return to school and settings on 11th August. Highland Council's Education Committee Chair, Cllr John Finlayson said: "The return to workplace and Highland schools for our Education staff will have to be undertaken carefully and gradually.
The Highland Council's Environmental Health Team is advising consumers to use their water wisely and check their private water supply systems for any signs of water leaks or risks of contamination. A private water supply is a property that does not have a Scottish Water mains water connection.
The Highland Council can now confirm which of the Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRC) across the region will re-open from Monday 1st June 2020. A phased approach to re-opening the sites will be adopted with strict controls in place to help manage social distancing and to ensure the anticipated high number of visitors and volume of waste can be handled safely and efficiently.
The Highland Council's Housing Service currently operates an annual garden aid scheme, cutting grass in approximately 1,300 council house gardens. The Garden Aid service is for older or disabled tenants who don't have anyone to help them cut their grass.
Following an ambitious bid by Highland Council supported by NHS Highland, to deliver rapid active travel interventions in response to the Coronavirus pandemic, The Highland Council has been awarded £752,954 from the Scottish Government's Spaces for People fund, which is administered by Sustrans. Over the coming weeks towns across Highland and the City of Inverness will see a roll-out of temporary walking, wheeling and cycling infrastructure along priority routes.
Public assurance is being provided by Highland Council that the organisation is fully transparent and accountable during the COVID-19 emergency response as it publishes decisions made by its group of senior officers - or Gold Group* - under emergency procedures. The list of decisions made since 19 March 2020 is on the Council's website at the following link and will continue to the added to and updated as further decisions are made using emergency procedures.
The COVID-19 small business and self-catering grant scheme, set up to help companies stay in business during the coronavirus crisis, has now paid out £56,286,250 million to 5135 Highland businesses. The Highland Council's Head of Development and Regeneration, Allan Maguire, said: "We now are processing applications and approving payment within days of a business submitting a complete online application form and its accompanying evidence.
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