A new £550,000 development of six affordable homes has been completed in Belford by social landlord Isos.
The development at Raynham Close, in partnership with main contractor NB Clark, comprises four two-bedroom homes and a pair of three-bedroom homes.
Vince Walsh, development and regeneration manager with Isos, said: “These are our first homes in the village of Belford and demonstrate our commitment to providing social housing in rural areas.
“The properties benefit from very high levels of insulation – something they will need in north Northumberland – and energy efficient boilers to help keep household bills in check.”
The homes have been let to local families through the Homefinder choice based lettings system.
They are of built of traditional brick and tile construction and meet the Homes and Communities Agency, Secure by Design and Lifetime Homes standards. The latter means they can easily be adapted to meet the changing needs of residents as they get older.
Michael Farr, executive director of property and development with Isos, added: “The UK is simply not building enough homes for those in need, so it’s our responsibility to deliver as many new properties as possible to help tackle the shortage.
“In Rural Housing Week, it’s important to remember the vital role that developments like this one in Belford play in keeping villages alive.
“In recent years, Isos has delivered schemes like this one across Northumberland – in villages like Falstone, Lesbury, Beadnell and Chatton. They can be the difference between families being able to stay in their communities, and being obliged to move away to find a home they can afford.
“We are operating region wide in both rural and urban communities and would welcome approaches from anyone who has a site where we could build new homes and bolster our development programme.”
The scheme highlights the situation faced by many in rural Northumberland, who face having to leave their home area, due to exorbitant housing costs – eight or nine times the average wage, as the National Housing Federation has reported.