Council To End ALMO Deal 5 Years Early

Following a vote by it’s cabinet, Charnwood Council have decided to transfer the management of its 6,000 homes back to the council from it’s arm’s-length management organisation (ALMO), Charnwood Neighbourhood Housing.

CNH was set up in 2007 with a 10-year-contract to manage the council stock.  The contract included a break clause in June 2012, which the council will be taking.

The move is estimated to save £638,000 a year, and follows the government’s decision to end the link between ALMOs and access to funding to improve the condition of housing stock.

The struggling ALMO reported losses of £630,000 for 2008/09, which forced it to cut back on repairs and maintenance.  Later, in 2010, it was unable to secure the two-star rating from the Audit Commission which was required in order to access decent homes funding.

The decision comes after an analysis of potential savings carried out by CIH Consulting.  It also conducted a poll of tenants, and found 75% were in favour of a move back to full council control.

Charnwood council’s cabinet member for housing, Jane Hunt, said “We already have a plan to invest £60 million in our housing stock over the next five years.  By bringing it back under our direct control we can maximise every penny of that investment.  We are absolutely committed to ensuring tenants are involved in the new organisation and will not notice any break in service during the transition.”

The move back to council control may take up to 9 months, with CNH staff being transferred to the local authority.

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