Leicester City Council has unveiled plans to buy 371 new properties at a cost of £26.6m as part of efforts to address a growing need for affordable housing.
The local authority said the funds would come from £100m of capital it had set aside to support the delivery of affordable housing in Leicester.
This will include £10.5m from a pot of cash retained from the sale of council properties under the Government’s Right to Buy scheme.
The vast majority (366) of the properties being purchased are a mix of bedsits, studios and one-bedroom flats. The council will also buy four 2-bedroom flats and a three-bedroom house as part of the deal.
All existing occupiers affected by the purchase will become council housing tenants at the point of completion and will be asked to sign a tenancy agreement.
The council said that there are 6,366 households on its housing register. Of these, over a quarter are waiting for one-bedroom accommodation, with the average waiting time between five months for those assessed as being in the highest priority people, and two years.
The Leicester & Leicestershire Housing and Economic Needs Assessment (HEDNA) 2017 concluded that the city needs a further 786 new units of affordable housing each year to meet need.
City Mayor Peter Soulsby said: “There is a desperate need for more affordable housing in the city and we are constantly looking for new ways to provide it.
“This major investment will significantly increase our housing stock and help address the growing need for affordable homes.”