London’s property market may be full of million-pound homes with “pizza lifts”, but further north, in Liverpool, properties are selling for a lot less thanks to ingenious schemes from local governments.
In 2013, the mayor of Liverpool, Joe Anderson launched a scheme to sell houses in the run down Picton area for a measly £1, and now, new figures show that — perhaps unsurprisingly — the scheme has been a huge success.
According to the BBC, 2,750 people have said they’re interested in snapping up a £1 ($US1.54) home, which are part of Mayor Anderson’s plans to regenerate and redevelop some of the most deprived and unloved parts of Liverpool.
Very few of the applicants have been successful so far, and in the initial sale, only 20 homes were sold. Clearly this is a case of demand outstripping supply.
Only a few streets of empty houses were put up for sale, but the success of the scheme prompted Liverpool City Council to invest £6 million into bringing empty properties back into use across the city, according to the BBC.
Nine streets in the Picton area are now up for sale, and a second wave of applicants are set to be given their chance at a£1 home.
A new round of applications for the cheap houses opened in late July, according to the Liverpool Echo, and the council will now tell 250 lucky buyers that they have the chance to buy one of the homes.
However, not just anyone can use the scheme to get on the property ladder for less than a single ride on the bus. To be considered, applicants for the £1 homes must be first time buyers, live or work in Liverpool, and be employed. Priority is also being given to people with kids and those with good credit.
Considering that the houses only cost £1, no one will be surprised to learn that they come with a minimum of amenities, and many have been empty for more than a decade.
Speaking to the BBC, Tony Mousdale, the empty homes manager of Liverpool City Council said “All the plumbing and the electrics and fixtures and fittings have been ripped out – so it is pretty much a shell.”
He was keen to emphasise the benefits of this, adding “It’s a blank canvas and people can put their own stamp on it.”