Developer's bid to scrap all affordable housing Southend Council has asked it to provide

Southend Standard: Developer's bid to scrap all affordable housing Developer's bid to scrap all affordable housing

A COMPANY says it needs to scrap all the affordable housing it was asked to build alongside four new developments or it will drop the projects at altogether.

Sandhurst Newhomes has permission to build more than 100 flats at sites at 53 Pavilion Drive, Leigh, the former Shell garage on London Road, Westcliff, at 845-849 London Road, Chalkwell and on 86-104 Salisbury Avenue and 211-213 North Road, Westcliff.

It is using new Government legislation to apply to remove all the affordable housing conditions, known as section 106 agreements, attached to the plans.

The company says a changing economic climate means that the schemes will not be viable in the current market with the conditions attached.

Conservative Blenheim Park ward councillor James Courtenay said: “Section 106 agreements aren’t calling on them to build houses and give them away, they are often sold on to housing associations for affordable housing that people desperately need.

“House prices haven’t changed that much in the last couple of years, where I’m trying to call in two of the applications, and I hope the developer will think again.

“I think new government legislation on this has far less affect in the south east where the difference between building costs and house prices is much higher than in the north.”

Sandhurst Newhomes managing director Brian Strickland confirmed he was using newly introduced legislation designed to ease the burden on developers from councils.

He said: “These councillors have no idea about business. The new legislation means that if they refuse or don’t make a decision within 28 days it goes straight to the Secretary of State to decide.

“Southend Council has a policy of taking 20 per cent of everything you want to build as affordable housing. That’s been superceded by the help to buy scheme which gives first time buyers 25 per cent towards the cost of a home.

“It would be much better for the local economy, local builders and the housing situation to let us get these houses built, otherwise they’re going to be asking for 20 per cent of nothing in terms of affordable homes.”

According to Southend Council’s website, permission was granted for the schemes at different dates between 2008 and 2011.

Mr Strickland said he only agreed to build the affordable housing in 2011 as council officers warned him the permission would not be extended otherwise.

Comments (25)

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8:58am Sun 8 Dec 13

Nebs says...

The market has shot up in the last few months. If anything they should be building more affordable homes.
The market has shot up in the last few months. If anything they should be building more affordable homes. Nebs

9:45am Sun 8 Dec 13

Jack222 says...

Rubbish. Let them build new houses without the cheap other houses.
Rubbish. Let them build new houses without the cheap other houses. Jack222

10:00am Sun 8 Dec 13

tricklesthegreek says...

Good. The H2B scheme is riddled with conditions as are those who are key workers - you can only get mortgages from a couple of lenders and there are lots of restrictions on what you can and can't do. I'd sooner hold out, save for a little longer on the deposit front and have the freedom to choose to buy from whomever I wish.
Good. The H2B scheme is riddled with conditions as are those who are key workers - you can only get mortgages from a couple of lenders and there are lots of restrictions on what you can and can't do. I'd sooner hold out, save for a little longer on the deposit front and have the freedom to choose to buy from whomever I wish. tricklesthegreek

10:24am Sun 8 Dec 13

disgusted of essex says...

Another greedy developer!
Another greedy developer! disgusted of essex

10:34am Sun 8 Dec 13

Howard Cháse says...

If you don't want to build affordable homes -Clear off!
If you don't want to build affordable homes -Clear off! Howard Cháse

10:39am Sun 8 Dec 13

Idontknowy says...

Greedy developers again Ready to agree to build affordable houses to get their plans through then won't follow through Taken note of their name and make your own decision whether to buy from them in the future
Greedy developers again Ready to agree to build affordable houses to get their plans through then won't follow through Taken note of their name and make your own decision whether to buy from them in the future Idontknowy

10:53am Sun 8 Dec 13

MatthewSDent says...

If they want to build, they should abide by the conditions of their planning permission. Like everyone else. The fact that developers have lots of money does not make them above the law.

We are in the middle of a housing crisis, and Southend badly needs more affordable housing. Help To Buy is a disaster in the making, and certainly doesn't neutralise the need for affordable housing. George Osborne himself has said that he hopes it creates a housing bubblebubble, and pushes prices up.

If anything, Help To Buy makes affordable housing MORE essential.
If they want to build, they should abide by the conditions of their planning permission. Like everyone else. The fact that developers have lots of money does not make them above the law. We are in the middle of a housing crisis, and Southend badly needs more affordable housing. Help To Buy is a disaster in the making, and certainly doesn't neutralise the need for affordable housing. George Osborne himself has said that he hopes it creates a housing bubblebubble, and pushes prices up. If anything, Help To Buy makes affordable housing MORE essential. MatthewSDent

11:15am Sun 8 Dec 13

_Lotus_ says...

So the Developer is threatening to drop the project altogether if forced to build for affordable housing?

Good, let him scrap the scheme then, he doesn't want to do this affordable housing project but still wants to build 100 flats.

Seriously, he won't do this, therefore, be sodded if they let him still build the 100 flats, let him scrap the building and go elsewhere. He either sticks to what the agreement is or gets nothing, let him get nothing.
So the Developer is threatening to drop the project altogether if forced to build for affordable housing? Good, let him scrap the scheme then, he doesn't want to do this affordable housing project but still wants to build 100 flats. Seriously, he won't do this, therefore, be sodded if they let him still build the 100 flats, let him scrap the building and go elsewhere. He either sticks to what the agreement is or gets nothing, let him get nothing. _Lotus_

11:22am Sun 8 Dec 13

CHRISTMAS CAROL says...

hooray for section 106, let the developer bog off
hooray for section 106, let the developer bog off CHRISTMAS CAROL

11:42am Sun 8 Dec 13

EssexPerson says...

He says the council will get 20% of nothing, does he not realise that this means he gets 80% of nothing as well?!
He says the council will get 20% of nothing, does he not realise that this means he gets 80% of nothing as well?! EssexPerson

11:46am Sun 8 Dec 13

pembury53 says...

you all know how this will end though, surely ? several new developments of luxury flats without the affordable housing is my guess
you all know how this will end though, surely ? several new developments of luxury flats without the affordable housing is my guess pembury53

1:22pm Sun 8 Dec 13

emcee says...

Quote: "The company says a changing economic climate means that the schemes will not be viable in the current market with the conditions attached."
-
So, basically we have another case of a developer sitting on land, waiting to make a killing. However, it seems, it is not working out for the developer this time and he may make as much profit as he hoped so he is throwing his toys out of the pram. Put it this way, if he does not want to build on land he is sitting on that is his problem. However, the council could demand the developer carry on with the current scheme or release the land to someone who will.
Bottom line is no affordable housing, no development. That is what the price for scheme is and that is how it should stay. Simple. I just hope the council says the same. It is times like these we need a strong council and I bet if the council stands its ground on this developer's "ransom demand" it will not only send a signal to all developers hoping to act the same way but this developer will probably end up going ahead with the original scheme anyway.
Quote: "The company says a changing economic climate means that the schemes will not be viable in the current market with the conditions attached." - So, basically we have another case of a developer sitting on land, waiting to make a killing. However, it seems, it is not working out for the developer this time and he may make as much profit as he hoped so he is throwing his toys out of the pram. Put it this way, if he does not want to build on land he is sitting on that is his problem. However, the council could demand the developer carry on with the current scheme or release the land to someone who will. Bottom line is no affordable housing, no development. That is what the price for scheme is and that is how it should stay. Simple. I just hope the council says the same. It is times like these we need a strong council and I bet if the council stands its ground on this developer's "ransom demand" it will not only send a signal to all developers hoping to act the same way but this developer will probably end up going ahead with the original scheme anyway. emcee

1:54pm Sun 8 Dec 13

echoforum says...

emcee wrote:
Quote: "The company says a changing economic climate means that the schemes will not be viable in the current market with the conditions attached."
-
So, basically we have another case of a developer sitting on land, waiting to make a killing. However, it seems, it is not working out for the developer this time and he may make as much profit as he hoped so he is throwing his toys out of the pram. Put it this way, if he does not want to build on land he is sitting on that is his problem. However, the council could demand the developer carry on with the current scheme or release the land to someone who will.
Bottom line is no affordable housing, no development. That is what the price for scheme is and that is how it should stay. Simple. I just hope the council says the same. It is times like these we need a strong council and I bet if the council stands its ground on this developer's "ransom demand" it will not only send a signal to all developers hoping to act the same way but this developer will probably end up going ahead with the original scheme anyway.
Spot -On.
We are now reaping the reward for selling our communities to the highest bidder.The rich developer can carry out his money making plans from the comfort of his tax free haven..probably won't ever visit Southend.
Southend is littered with Land banks and none these 'Dealers' give a monkeys about the people that have to live here.They have all the power,money,best lawyers and ultimate control of how Southend looks in the future.....a scary thought.
[quote][p][bold]emcee[/bold] wrote: Quote: "The company says a changing economic climate means that the schemes will not be viable in the current market with the conditions attached." - So, basically we have another case of a developer sitting on land, waiting to make a killing. However, it seems, it is not working out for the developer this time and he may make as much profit as he hoped so he is throwing his toys out of the pram. Put it this way, if he does not want to build on land he is sitting on that is his problem. However, the council could demand the developer carry on with the current scheme or release the land to someone who will. Bottom line is no affordable housing, no development. That is what the price for scheme is and that is how it should stay. Simple. I just hope the council says the same. It is times like these we need a strong council and I bet if the council stands its ground on this developer's "ransom demand" it will not only send a signal to all developers hoping to act the same way but this developer will probably end up going ahead with the original scheme anyway.[/p][/quote]Spot -On. We are now reaping the reward for selling our communities to the highest bidder.The rich developer can carry out his money making plans from the comfort of his tax free haven..probably won't ever visit Southend. Southend is littered with Land banks and none these 'Dealers' give a monkeys about the people that have to live here.They have all the power,money,best lawyers and ultimate control of how Southend looks in the future.....a scary thought. echoforum

2:38pm Sun 8 Dec 13

John T Pharro says...

Interesting isn't it? Castle Point Council always say it is a legal requirement that all major developments have to include affordable housing. Clearly not the case.
Interesting isn't it? Castle Point Council always say it is a legal requirement that all major developments have to include affordable housing. Clearly not the case. John T Pharro

5:18pm Sun 8 Dec 13

MHWoods says...

Maybe the Council can CPO the site and re-sell to somebody who can do their sums properly.
Maybe the Council can CPO the site and re-sell to somebody who can do their sums properly. MHWoods

6:02pm Sun 8 Dec 13

Nowthatsworthknowing says...

The trouble with affordable housing, is the troublesome folk who move in, tainting the lives of the decent folk.
By all means build affordable housing, like they did in the 1960's, those were called estates, but don't try to mix the good with the bad.
The trouble with affordable housing, is the troublesome folk who move in, tainting the lives of the decent folk. By all means build affordable housing, like they did in the 1960's, those were called estates, but don't try to mix the good with the bad. Nowthatsworthknowing

6:43pm Sun 8 Dec 13

jolllyboy says...

If the council hold out he is free to sell the land to someone who will build affordable houses.

Time for some good old southend council built council houses.
If the council hold out he is free to sell the land to someone who will build affordable houses. Time for some good old southend council built council houses. jolllyboy

7:30pm Sun 8 Dec 13

Nelly99 says...

WTF is affordable housing? All houses are affordable by the people buying them or they wouldn't get them! In this context it means cheap rubbish for council tenants who can't pay the rent anyway.
WTF is affordable housing? All houses are affordable by the people buying them or they wouldn't get them! In this context it means cheap rubbish for council tenants who can't pay the rent anyway. Nelly99

9:08pm Sun 8 Dec 13

Teetime says...

Stand firm SBC, my guess from looking at their figures posted with companies house is that Sandhurst Newhomes need to build on the land and maximise their return, thus they want all private sale. If you give in to them, then expect a queue of developers at your door asking for the same concession. I believe the Borough need to maximise the amount of affordable housing built in the area. If Sandhurst Newhomes can't accept the terms of the planning then maybe one of the Housing Associations will purchase the land off of them and build all the units as affordable housing.
Stand firm SBC, my guess from looking at their figures posted with companies house is that Sandhurst Newhomes need to build on the land and maximise their return, thus they want all private sale. If you give in to them, then expect a queue of developers at your door asking for the same concession. I believe the Borough need to maximise the amount of affordable housing built in the area. If Sandhurst Newhomes can't accept the terms of the planning then maybe one of the Housing Associations will purchase the land off of them and build all the units as affordable housing. Teetime

10:37pm Sun 8 Dec 13

Thorp55 says...

If I was buying a nice new flat with my hard earned money,I would not want it to be in the same block as so called affordable housing. The reason being some of these would be given to people who didn't work or pay rent and would not have pride in the area.probably people not even from the borough.I know lots of tenants are not like that but you only need a few to pull the property value down, and as you work hard to pay a mortgage why buy there when you could go elsewhere.
If I was buying a nice new flat with my hard earned money,I would not want it to be in the same block as so called affordable housing. The reason being some of these would be given to people who didn't work or pay rent and would not have pride in the area.probably people not even from the borough.I know lots of tenants are not like that but you only need a few to pull the property value down, and as you work hard to pay a mortgage why buy there when you could go elsewhere. Thorp55

2:40am Mon 9 Dec 13

emcee says...

Thorp55 wrote:
If I was buying a nice new flat with my hard earned money,I would not want it to be in the same block as so called affordable housing. The reason being some of these would be given to people who didn't work or pay rent and would not have pride in the area.probably people not even from the borough.I know lots of tenants are not like that but you only need a few to pull the property value down, and as you work hard to pay a mortgage why buy there when you could go elsewhere.
I have heard some silly comments in my time but what you have just said is that only certain tenants of social housing can be bad neighbours.
Well, I can assure you that there are some horrendous, badly behaved home owners also. They can often be far worse than tenants because they think that as they own their property they can do what they want. At least tenants are easier to get removed from the neighbourhood than someone who owns their own bricks and motar.
Bad neighbours come from all walks of life, rich or poor, tenants or homeowners. You cannot pigeonhole bad neighbours into one group of society. To do so shows ignorance.
[quote][p][bold]Thorp55[/bold] wrote: If I was buying a nice new flat with my hard earned money,I would not want it to be in the same block as so called affordable housing. The reason being some of these would be given to people who didn't work or pay rent and would not have pride in the area.probably people not even from the borough.I know lots of tenants are not like that but you only need a few to pull the property value down, and as you work hard to pay a mortgage why buy there when you could go elsewhere.[/p][/quote]I have heard some silly comments in my time but what you have just said is that only certain tenants of social housing can be bad neighbours. Well, I can assure you that there are some horrendous, badly behaved home owners also. They can often be far worse than tenants because they think that as they own their property they can do what they want. At least tenants are easier to get removed from the neighbourhood than someone who owns their own bricks and motar. Bad neighbours come from all walks of life, rich or poor, tenants or homeowners. You cannot pigeonhole bad neighbours into one group of society. To do so shows ignorance. emcee

10:33am Mon 9 Dec 13

MilesBond says...

So basically this developer wants to take the HTB scheme's 25% and add that to their sale prices. What a nice ethical company!
So basically this developer wants to take the HTB scheme's 25% and add that to their sale prices. What a nice ethical company! MilesBond

11:37am Mon 9 Dec 13

Nowthatsworthknowing says...

John T Pharro wrote:
Interesting isn't it? Castle Point Council always say it is a legal requirement that all major developments have to include affordable housing. Clearly not the case.
It is On Canvey, for good reason, mainland dwellers don't want those oiks.
[quote][p][bold]John T Pharro[/bold] wrote: Interesting isn't it? Castle Point Council always say it is a legal requirement that all major developments have to include affordable housing. Clearly not the case.[/p][/quote]It is On Canvey, for good reason, mainland dwellers don't want those oiks. Nowthatsworthknowing

3:45pm Mon 9 Dec 13

iknowbetter says...

Nowthatsworthknowing wrote:
John T Pharro wrote:
Interesting isn't it? Castle Point Council always say it is a legal requirement that all major developments have to include affordable housing. Clearly not the case.
It is On Canvey, for good reason, mainland dwellers don't want those oiks.
Was that before you and your brood moved in?

This developer should sack the person who worked out the finances back in 2008-20011 when the economic climate was in a worse state then it is now. There is no point spitting your dummy out now you have realized your profit margin is not quite what you expected it to be. Get out of the game if you cannot live with the fair conditions that you as a developer agreed to with the planning dept back when planning was granted.
[quote][p][bold]Nowthatsworthknowing[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]John T Pharro[/bold] wrote: Interesting isn't it? Castle Point Council always say it is a legal requirement that all major developments have to include affordable housing. Clearly not the case.[/p][/quote]It is On Canvey, for good reason, mainland dwellers don't want those oiks.[/p][/quote]Was that before you and your brood moved in? This developer should sack the person who worked out the finances back in 2008-20011 when the economic climate was in a worse state then it is now. There is no point spitting your dummy out now you have realized your profit margin is not quite what you expected it to be. Get out of the game if you cannot live with the fair conditions that you as a developer agreed to with the planning dept back when planning was granted. iknowbetter

9:47am Wed 11 Dec 13

DannyK86 says...

Ridiculous comments from the greedy developer about Help to Buy. That policy is a terrible idea - all it does is provide risky mortgages with high repayments for people who can't really afford them, whilst putting up the prices for those of us who are working hard to save our own proper deposits to buy our first place.
Ridiculous comments from the greedy developer about Help to Buy. That policy is a terrible idea - all it does is provide risky mortgages with high repayments for people who can't really afford them, whilst putting up the prices for those of us who are working hard to save our own proper deposits to buy our first place. DannyK86

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