12:10pm Wednesday 26th February 2014
By Gina Bebbington
THE deadline has been extended for people to bid for newly built family homes in Northwich after a surprising lack of interest from residents.
Only three bids, or expressions of interest, have been received for three-bedroom houses being built in Winnington.
Six family homes for people in housing need are being built by Weaver Vale Housing Trust at Appleton Street, including four three-bedroom houses and two four-bedroom houses.
The four-bedroom homes have attracted more interest but still only 13 bids, which is lower than expected.
Speaking to the Guardian on Monday Jackie Hodgson, housing manager for the trust, said: “To date the advert for the three-bedroom houses has been open for five days and we’ve had three bids.
“For a Northwich property we would have looked at 50 or 60 bids.”
The trust is investigating why the number of bids has dropped for its properties in general and appealed for information through the Guardian in January.
Staff asked for feedback on whether it was down to bedroom tax, changes to the housing register or some other cause that had resulted in only 2,000 of the 8,000 people on the register actively bidding on trust properties.
Jackie said: “We still don’t know but something has got to be wrong if we’ve got these beautiful houses and no-one’s bidding on them.”
The houses, which will be ready at the end of March or beginning of April, were advertised on Thursday, February 20, with a bidding deadline of Tuesday, February 25.
The trust has now extended the deadline for a week.
Jackie said: “We want to ensure that these people in housing need are aware of these properties.”
The properties are being allocated through TrustHomeChoice and new residents are invited to register online in order to bid on them.
For more information visit trusthomechoice.co.uk.
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