Agenda item

Future Structure and Operation of TorVista Homes

To consider the recommendations of the Cabinet and the submitted report regarding the future structure and operation of TorVista Homes.


Following the decision of the Council on 20 September 2023 (Minute 37/9/23 refers), the Council considered the recommendations of the Cabinet and the submitted report proposing to dissolve TorVista Homes (TVH), to enable the Council to achieve its strategic objectives through a more cost effective and sustainable approach.


Councillor Tyerman proposed and Councillor Cowell seconded a motion, which was agreed (unanimously) by the Council as set out below:


1.         that TorVista Homes be dissolved with effect from 1 April 2024, (or immediately following transfer of all social housing units, if this is beyond this date), with mandatory de-registration to the Regulator of Social Housing by TorVista Homes in advance and:


the Director of Pride in Place be instructed to:


a.   commence tenant consultation (in line with current requirements by the Regulator of Social Housing) in relation to the proposal to transfer the social housing units, income and liabilities into Torbay Council;


b.   instruct TorVista Homes to maintain a continuous level of service to their tenants (in accordance with all requirements for Registered Providers of social housing, to at least the same standard as they currently receive), including continuing to achieve mandatory compliance standards until transfer of the homes has been completed;  and 


c.   develop detailed delivery plans, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Housing, Finance and Corporate Services and all Group Leaders (or their nominees), setting out how the Council will accelerate:


i.          the provision of new Affordable Housing, targeted to meet Torbay’s local housing need, specifically including;


1.          Social Rented Housing; and

2.          Affordable Rented Housing


ii.        the provision of accommodation for strategic priority areas, including:


1.    Extra care

2.    Supported housing (for various client groups)

3.    Temporary accommodation, and

4.    Care experienced young people;


the Director of Finance, in consultation with the Monitoring Officer and Cabinet Member for Housing, Finance and Corporate Services, be given delegated authority to:


a.  subject to satisfactory completion of all necessary due diligence, (and tenancy engagement), enter into the Capital funding grant agreements with Homes England and to transfer all social housing units, assets, liabilities and income from TorVista Homes into the ownership and management of Torbay Council;  and


b.   upon completion of all satisfactory due diligence, transfer any land or development assets owned by TDA or TorVista Homes into the ownership of Torbay Council, as required;  and


the Head of Strategic Housing and Delivery, in consultation with Cabinet Member for Housing, Finance and Corporate Services, be given delegated authority to:


a.   subject to completion of a satisfactory procurement, agree a suitable scope and extend the Council’s existing Temporary Accommodation and property maintenance contract for a further 12 months, with additional provision to include the maintenance and compliance of any homes currently owned by TorVista Homes that transfer to the Council, should this be required; and


b.   apply for Investment Partner status on behalf of the Council, and secure Homes England funding for any eligible future directly provided affordable housing scheme;  and


2.        that Council approve an annual revenue budget of £150,000 for 2024/25 for the Council to fund and provide in house, the management and operation of activities previously undertaken by TorVista Homes.

Supporting documents: