East Lothian Council is to take part in a new national initiative to increase the supply of homes available for mid-market rent.
At a meeting councillors agreed to participate in a new initiative from the Scottish Futures Trust and Scottish Government.
Under the National Housing Trust initiative (NHT), the council will part fund new-build homes from private developers that are unsold, or kick-start development on private housing sites that have been mothballed due to the economic conditions.
Around 15-30 new homes for rent will become available through the scheme. These will not be council houses, although the council may buy them if the private tenant chooses not to at the end of their initial tenancy.
The homes will be let at a mid-market rent level - 20% lower than an average private let - for between five and 10 years. At the end of that period, the properties will be sold. The council's loan will be repaid and any interest costs will be met by the developer. The Scottish Government guarantees both the repayment of the loan and the council's interest costs making the initiative zero-cost for local taxpayers.
Housing and Communities Minister Alex Neil said: "Continuing economic uncertainty puts into sharp focus the financial challenges facing the Scottish Government and cash-strapped local authorities as we strive to increase the supply of affordable homes across the country.
"The National Housing Trust model has the potential to help local authorities meet this intermediate housing need in their area by providing medium term affordable housing for mid-market rent.
"I am delighted that East Lothian Council and many others across Scotland are exploring imaginative approaches for providing much more affordable housing. I am happy to be able to offer support to the council to do this."
Cabinet member for Housing Councillor Stuart Currie told the meeting: "The National Housing Trust is a new option available to us and I'm pleased that we're able to introduce an innovate model of funding that presents no financial risk to local residents.
"The new properties will be in addition to the council and housing association build programmes, which are already delivering new homes, and our planning policies that insist developers contribute 25% of new build developments for affordable housing.
"By joining this scheme, we're offering more housing choices for people in East Lothian."
Time and date
The Highland Council has announced that the West Link Stage One works will commence on Tuesday 03 May and is expected to be completed by 2017. The initial works on Stage One will commence on the A82 Glen Urquhart at its junction with Bught Drive and are expected to last for 6 weeks, with traffic ma
The Glasgow and West of Scotland Forum of Housing Associations (GWSF) has published a detailed guide to the housing pledges made by the five main political parties in their 2016 manifestos. The guide highlights each parties pledges relating to housing supplies, social housing, homelessness, housing
Investigations launched into allegations of corruption at a central heating company part-owned by North Lanarkshire Council. It is understood that an anonymous letter sent to council leader Jim Logue, made allegations about contracts secured by the company and the council's procurement process. Th
Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution (SHEPD) has announced a series of events across the Western Isles, aimed at working with local residents in developing plans to respond to extreme weather and other emergencies. SHEPD said that the events hope to put local knowledge, skills and facilities
Work is to begin on phase two of the £1.85 million Newmill flood protection scheme in Moray. Main contractor Balfour Beatty will develop a network of ditches and culverts in fields north of the village as part of the project. In addition, a cascade will be built at the west west end of the village
A major milestone has been reached on the construction of a new £11.5 million primary school in East Dunbartonshire. A topping out ceremony has been held to mark the completion of brickwork on the Lenzie Meadow Primary School project. The scheme is being delivered by Lendlease in partnership with
Scottish Water has revealed plans of a £5 million water mains improvement project in Dundee. Works in the Perth Road region includes pipe refurbishments, replacements, and re-lining the internal structure of the mains or cleaning them by swabbing and flushing. The project will be carried out by Ca
Residents in south central Edinburgh are being invited to 'have their say' on how hundreds of thousands of pounds should be spent in their area. The South Central Decides initiative allows community groups to apply for grants of up to £2,500 each from three pots of money totalling £221,000. A tota
CCG has started work on a new residential housing development in Falkirk. The firm will build 16 cottage flats and four semi-detached houses in the Tamfourhill area. The 'Carrick Place' development is being built for Weslo Housing Management. CCG will use its own methods of construction to make e
Energy firm Wood Group PSN (WGPSN) has secured a £342 million contract to deliver services for BP-operated projects in Azerbaijan. The Aberdeen-based company will provide engineering, procurement and construction management services (EPCM) to eight offshore facilities. In addition, the deal will c