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Housing associations in 'one of the sector's largest stock swaps'

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Housing associations in 'one of the sector's largest stock swaps'

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Published by 24publishing for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Communities, Local Government

Housing associations in 'one of the sector's largest stock swaps' Housing associations in 'one of the sector's largest stock swaps'

Two of the South West’s biggest housing providers are in talks to swap homes.

If the plans go-ahead, 11,000-home Knightstone Housing Association based in Weston-super-Mare will take on the ownership of 748 homes from 18,000-home Spectrum Housing Group.

The homes are located within the Bristol, Mendip, Sedgemoor, North Somerset, South Gloucestershire, Taunton Deane, and Bath & North East Somerset local authority areas.

In return, Spectrum will take on the ownership of 803 homes across Dorset, Bournemouth and Poole. The combined number of homes involved in the transfer will make it one of the largest swaps in the social housing sector.

 Knightstone and Spectrum are formally consulting residents affected by the potential transfer and are expecting to conclude this by the end of May. 

This is the second major swap by Knightstone in the past 12 months. The move forms part of its ‘Take on the Future’ transformation plan which includes concentrating its services across nine local authorities in the West of England and Somerset - down from 37.

The first swap was completed in January with Sovereign Housing Association in Wiltshire & Swindon.

Nick Horne (pictured), Knightstone’s Chief Executive, said: “Spectrum Housing Group has a strong presence in Dorset.  Both Knightstone and Spectrum are committed to providing an excellent service to their customers. Concentrating our services more locally means residents from both organisations will continue to receive a great service.

“This is one of the largest swaps in our sector and it makes sense in the current economic climate. It allows both businesses to consolidate in areas where they already have a significant presence and deliver efficiencies, which will enable us to re-invest in services and provide more high-quality affordable homes.”

Wayne Morris, Chief Executive of Spectrum Housing Group, said: “Residents are at the heart of our business and by concentrating more of our homes together we can provide a better, more responsive local service. In tough economic times we must do all we can to become more efficient. This proposal will free up resources to deliver better services to both our existing and future residents.”

Spectrum plans to deliver 1,500 new homes in the next five years across South Wiltshire, Devon, Dorset, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.

Knightstone’s plans to deliver 1,500 new affordable homes for rent and sale in the West of England and Somerset over the next five years are also well under way.

 

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