A North East housing association is to give the region’s economy a boost by investing £190 million into building new homes and improving its existing properties.
Bernicia’s investment package will see at least 500 new homes built by 2023; “significantly” more if the opportunities arise, the organisation said.
Furthermore, Ashington-based Bernicia intends to spend £60 million on improvements to its housing stock, as well as boosting support services it provides for the 60,000 people who live in its properties across Northumberland, North Tyneside, Newcastle, Gateshead, Sunderland, County Durham and Hartlepool
The investment plan covers:
- £70 million funding to build at least 500 new homes
- A £60 million planned programme of investments in its existing 14,000 properties
- A £50 million responsive repairs programme
- £7 million to spend on improving the communities and neighbourhoods Bernicia manages
- New digital technology to make it easier for customers to access services
“Bernicia is in an ideal position to help drive forward the North East’s vision for growth and prosperity, especially within the housing sector,” said John Johnston, Bernicia’s chief executive.
“Our investment strategy is an exciting opportunity for us to build on the high levels of customer satisfaction we have, delivering the high quality, affordable homes that our region badly needs now and in the future…
“We will be investing in those neighbourhoods by not only improving our existing homes but by supporting community projects bringing people together and creating opportunities for people to improve their lives.
“Bernicia is also investing in digital technologies to transform our services for customers, so that they can access our support at times and in a way that suits their needs.”
James Ramsbotham, chief executive of North East England Chamber of Commerce added: “This substantial investment is a tremendous boost to our regional economy and excellent news for businesses who work with Bernicia.
“The North East has a shortage of high quality homes, and it’s great to see one of the region’s housing providers making such a strong commitment to change that and help build an environment for economic growth. These plans are an exemplar in social housing and really help to set the bar for the homes of the future.”