A Salford flat that was recovered from fraudsters last year is now being used to provide a safe haven for homeless people.
In November last year, Salix Homes launched a crackdown on tenancy fraud as part of International Fraud Awareness Week. One of the recovered properties is now being used for the scheme, ‘A Bed Every Night’.
This is a Greater Manchester initiative, spearhead by the combined authority, which commits to providing a roof over the head of rough sleepers in the city region.
Salix Homes officers had discovered that the one-bed flat in the Greengate area of the city was being illegally sublet and was the subject of a fraudulent Right To Buy application. Had it been successful, would have meant the property was sold at a discount of more than £30,000 and been lost from the city’s social housing supply.
Once the fraudulent activity was uncovered, the tenancy was terminated, and the property was reallocated to support the homeless project, launched by Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham last November.
‘A Bed for Every Night’ aims to provide roughsleepers with access to a bed, hot meal, a shower and additional support if they want it, throughout the cold winter months.
“Salix Homes takes tenancy fraud extremely seriously, as for every home that is misused or obtained by deception; it means one less home available for people in genuine housing need,” said Lee Sugden, Salix Homes’ chief executive.
“Thanks to the success of our recent crackdown and the recovery of this particular property, not only have we saved a social housing property that would have been lost forever, we’ve also ensured that the property in question is now being used to make a difference to the lives of roughsleepers in Greater Manchester.
“As a not-for-profit organisation, it is not right that some unscrupulous individuals are profiting from the homes that we let, and this particular case is a perfect example of why it’s so important that people are aware of the signs of tenancy fraud and report any suspicious activity in their communities.”