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Residents have the chance to influence the new proposed Housing Strategy by telling the council what it would like to see happen in the borough. Countrywide there is a shortage of housing stock in the private, rented, and public sector and Brentwood is affected with the need to built 233 new homes per year to meet the growing need for accommodation.

The consultation is open until February 28 and covers:

The Housing Strategy 2017-2020 which incorporates;

*** Homelessness Prevention Strategy

*** Tenancy Strategy

These core documents outline the broad approach to how the Council and Registered Providers (of social housing) will be seeking to provide housing and housing related services.

Chair of the Environment and Housing Management Committee, Cllr Chris Hossack said: “The council is not looking to produce a ‘one size fits all’ service but rather to offer a full range of community solutions. This is the opportunity for our residents to say how they want housing to be developed, what type of sheltered housing should be considered and what options for homeless should be pursued – the online form is straightforward and easy to complete in a matter of minutes and I would appeal to everyone to make the most of this by filling in their preferences. We take your views seriously and they will all be put forward to the Council Committees before the final draft strategy can be signed off.”

Did you know:

** Some 73,500 live in the borough

** 80% of residents own their own home but 20% need other options.

** New council properties are being built at Fawsters Close, which will provide sheltered housing,  and Magdalen Gardens where family homes will be constructed.

** Leasehold charges are being reviewed by a Councillor-led working group

** A new housing portal is being planned that will allow everyone to access rent management and repairs services 24/7

** Over the next three years the concept of Sheltered Accommodation will also be rebranded and remodelled as a

Community Living scheme.

** Consideration is being given to Special Unit Projects cover mixed developments where those working and those seeking work will be able to live on subsidised rents offering a potential route for younger residents to start achieving their goals in life.

** The Fielding Way Depot in Hutton could be redeveloped or leased out commercially and the remit for so-called “affordable housing” needs to be widened out to include shared ownership, shared equity, new builds and possible options outside the borough.

** Proposals include an “Affordable Housing Register” with a separate allocation policy and application process through to eco-home modular housing. In short – all options are being considered.

The Housing Strategy will go before the Environment and Housing Committee on March 8.