Council could help locals buy homes in Darwen
DARWEN Town Council is looking at how it can help people in the town get on the property ladder.
Sudell councillor Roy Davies said he wanted to help people get out of the renting market and into their own homes.
Now, councillors have invited a representative from Lloyds TSB bank to their next finance committee meeting to discuss its Lend A Hand initiative.
Under the scheme, the town council would put up to 20 per cent of the property’s value into a savings account while the home buyer would only require a five per cent deposit on their new home.
The suggestion by Coun Davies got a mixed reaction from fellow councillors at last week’s town meeting.
Coun Davies said: “We want to get people into homes. We should put our cash reserves into getting people into houses in Darwen.
“The best investment we can ever make with Darwen people’s money is in the people.
“And what better way is there to invest in people than by helping them on to the property ladder?”
Coun Davies said he had written to the bank inviting them to meet the council’s finance committee to explain how the scheme would work if it was put in place.
Labour opposition councillors were sceptical about the proposal.
Marsh House councillor Tom Evans said: “We would only have enough to pay for one house.
“And if someone defaults on their mortgage it could come back to the town council.
“There is nothing in the literature that says we have any protection.”
Sunnyhurst councillor Brian Taylor said: “This takes the risk away from the bank and on to the town council.
“I don’t think we should be risking the people of Darwen’s money in this way.”
And Sunnyhurst councillor Dave Smith said he felt the council’s budget was not big enough for the scheme to be effective.