Places for People appointed as a partner for HIF

Places for People has been selected as a management partner for the Housing Investment Fund (HIF), a joint venture set up by Manchester City Council and the Greater Manchester Pension Fund to help boost house building in Manchester.

Using land owned by Manchester City Council and financed by the Greater Manchester Pension Fund, the HIF aims to deliver 241 new homes across five sites in Manchester next year with around half being available for market rent and the rest for sale.
Places for People has been appointed as a residential management partner for the HIF and will enter into a 20-year operating lease with the Greater Manchester Pension Fund. Touchstone – which is owned by Places for People and manages 21,000 homes in the private rented sector – will manage the lettings and tenancies of the new properties.
Mary Parsons, group director at Places for People says: “We are delighted to be working as a partner for the HIF. We have been looking at ways to not only grow our market rent portfolio, but also of working with partners and investors to stimulate house building.
“As well as helping to meet the urgent need for new homes in Manchester and regenerate these areas of the city, the HIF offers an innovative and efficient investment model for the private rented sector, which is already attracting interest from other funds and institutional investors.
“Our appointment will enable the fund to benefit from a guaranteed annual income, reduced operational risk, future capital growth and the assurance that the properties are being managed to the highest standards by one of the largest landlords in the country. Tenants will benefit from a high-quality home and the full support from the Places for People and Touchstone team, including our 24-hour customer service centre and in-house repairs and maintenance teams.”
Councillor Nigel Murphy, Manchester City Council’s executive member for housing and regeneration, says: “Manchester’s forecasted population growth in the coming years means we need to act quickly and innovatively to ensure our housing stock is capable of supplying demand. Our Housing Investment Model is one way we are supporting residential growth – pushing forward development opportunities to ensure new and attractive homes are available and affordable to residents.”
A planning application is due to go to committee by the end of 2013. If approved, construction of the new homes could start in spring 2014. The properties would be a mix of two and three-bedroom homes with the tenure at each location tailored to local requirements.

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