Salford City Council has launched its own letting agency to help reduce pressure on its local authority waiting lists.
Salford Property Link will match people waiting for social housing with private landlords in order to help them affordable accommodation more quickly.
The new agency will also offer landlords a range of services from simple advertising and tenant matching right through to full property management, repairs and guaranteed rent.
According to its website, the agency offers four levels of service – bronze, silver, gold and platinum depending on whether landlords want them to simply help find a tenant or completely manage the property and guarantee rent.
‘As part of Salford City Council, we’re a not for profit, ethical service,’ the website states.
‘We offer competitive rates for our service and have established and effective links with other council services from regulatory services to welfare advice, should you or your tenant need any support. We also work closely with local partners such as JobCentrePlus to support tenants claiming Universal Credit.’
Salford City Council has also launched another company, Dérive to provide more social housing and offering more housing support to veterans and their families who may be struggling with rent arrears or to set up new homes after leaving the service.
‘There are huge waiting lists for social housing, with 39 people bidding for every property that becomes available but not enough homes to meet demand,’ said Salford mayor, Paul Dennett.
‘There is great potential for landlords to work with us to help people get the homes they want. We will work with tenants to make sure they can afford the property and with landlords to make sure the property meets decent homes standards.”
A report published by Shelter last year revealed that 1.15m households are in need of a social home and are stuck on long waiting lists, with only 290,000 social homes made available last year.
The report claimed that for those stuck on long lists, almost two-thirds (65%) are made to wait on lists for over a year.
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