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Mayor announces £25 million investment in affordable homes scheme with developments in north London

PUBLISHED: 18:00 15 August 2017 | UPDATED: 14:40 17 August 2017

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has announced £25 million investment into affordable housing developer Pocket Living, who already have two developments in Camden and one planned for Haringey.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has announced £25 million investment into affordable housing developer Pocket Living, who already have two developments in Camden and one planned for Haringey.

PA Wire/PA Images

Pocket Living will receive £25 million from Sadiq Khan to invest in more affordable homes for local workers and residents in the capital

Pocket Living's development on Willingham Terrace in Kentish TownPocket Living's development on Willingham Terrace in Kentish Town

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan has announced £25 million investment into Pocket Living. The developer designs affordable one and two bed homes for first time buyers, selling them outright to local residents or workers at a discount of at least 20 per cent off the surrounding market rate.

Pocket Living will begin work on 1,059 homes by March 2021, a third of which will be factory-built off-site for speedier delivery. One such development is a series of 98 one bedroom homes in Haringey. The development will also feature 12 two bedroom apartments and 16 town houses as part of Pocket Edition which provides homes to the open market.

Designed by HTA Design and BD Landscape Architects, and with a nursery by Dyvik Kahlen Architects, the new Haringey homes will surround a green street to foster a sense of community.

Previous Pocket Homes developments have included the company’s first scheme on Weedington Road in Belsize Park which provided homes for 22 local first time buyers in 2008, and Willingham Terrace in Kentish Town featuring 18 one bedroom homes, communal gardens and allotments.

The inside of the Pocket Living homes on Weedington Road in Camden.The inside of the Pocket Living homes on Weedington Road in Camden.

The injection comes as a result of Mr Khan’s £3.15 billion Innovation Fund agreed in November 2016. The funding will finance the buying of new land on brownfield sites. The company will also be lent £33.5 million from the Homes and Communities Agency’s Home Building Fund.

Marc Vlessing, CEO of Pocket Living, said: “Our mission has always been to open up the housing market to hard working young Londoners on low to middle incomes by delivering homes they can afford. This growing group is greatly in need of innovative housing solutions…

“We are proud to receive the Mayor’s backing for Pocket Living’s award-winning approach to design and the use of modern methods of construction to help those priced-out and not eligible for social housing to get onto the property ladder. Delivering homes for Londoners means initiatives between the public and private sector are crucial for the capital to thrive in the years ahead.”

The Mayor added: “The housing crisis is the biggest challenge facing Londoners today and I have been honest from the start that we won’t be able to turn things round overnight. For decades, we have simply not built enough new and affordable homes in the capital, meaning that for too many Londoners the dream of buying their own home is getting further and further out of reach.

HTA Design LLP is designing the Pocket Living homes at West Green Place in HaringeyHTA Design LLP is designing the Pocket Living homes at West Green Place in Haringey

“That is why I am working with Pocket Living to build more than a thousand homes for first-time buyers, using the latest off-site construction techniques to provide attractive and affordable homes as quickly as possible.”

The announcement comes as the Office for National Statistics today revealed that the average house price in Camden is £833,581, with a flat coming in at £755,185. The news that homes will be offered at a 20 per cent discount will be music to first time buyer’s ears; even, that is, if a flat will still tot up to over £600,000. It might not be Mozart, but it’s a start.

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