Lancaster and Preston given £600k in joint funding to drive up standards in supported housing sector
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Supported housing provides crucial help to some of the most vulnerable people in society including those who have experienced homelessness, people recovering from drug or alcohol dependence, and those with mental ill health.
While most providers deliver high quality accommodation and go above and beyond minimum standards, a significant minority are guilty of providing poor-quality homes and inadequate support.
The new funding will support the two councils in tackling landlords who exploit the system by subjecting them to increased property inspections and enforcement activities to drive up standards.
To ensure the public purse receives value for money, the councils will also be able to intervene where Housing Benefit applications relating to new provision does not meet local need or expected standards.
Communities that are affected by the symptoms of poor-quality provision will also receive additional support.
Coun Cary Matthews, cabinet member with responsibility for housing at Lancaster City Council, said: “Good quality supported housing is vital to the lives of some of the most vulnerable members of our community.
“It is imperative that we improve standards in this sector of the housing market and this additional funding will allow us to intervene and take action where landlords are exploiting the system for their own benefit.”
Preston City Council cabinet member for communities and social justice, Coun Nweeda Khan, said: “This is welcome news, especially as we face a cost of living crisis."