More than 1,000 on homeless list

Houses prices in Derry are 50% less than the Northern Ireland average.
Houses prices in Derry are 50% less than the Northern Ireland average.

More than 1,000 people were on the housing waiting list and in housing stress in the Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon area, the NI Housing Executive told the local council.

Single households dominated the waiting list and the number of homeless applicants awarded ‘full duty status’ by March this year was 435 - down 18.5% on the previous year.

The NIHE also revealed that 735 homes were allocated to waiting list applicants.

The government body also started planned maintenance to the outside of 690 homes, new double glazing for 505 homes, 512 smoke alarm replacements, installation of 259 new heating systems, and the upgrade of 187 kitchens.

In statistics furnished to the local council, they carried out maintenance to the outside of 731 homes, installed 715 homes with double glazing, installed new heating systems in 573 homes, the installation of 421 kitchens and smoke alarm replacements for 147 homes.

However, there were only 52 new build units completed with 182 planned for 2016-19.

They also completed 116 Disabled Facilities Grants.

The body said it is due to make a significant investment during 2016/17 in the area.

Siobhan McCauley, the Housing Executive’s Director of Regional Services said: “Maintaining its housing stock is a priority for the NIHE and this year in ABC Council area it will spend nearly £11.07 million on planned and response maintenance to its homes. This will include outside maintenance work to 1,103 homes, the installation of kitchens in 407 homes, new heating for 373 homes, double glazing in 328 homes and the new style make-over where bathrooms and kitchens are being installed as well as an upgrade to the house’s electrics in 109 homes. Last year it spent £596k on both major and minor works helping people live more comfortably in their homes.”