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Carling Property Group makes history with affordable housing support from Scottish Government

 

Property and investment firm Carling Property Group has made history as the first private property developer to receive affordable housing support from the Scottish Government.

Carling Property Group (CPG), whose mission is to fill the gap in affordable accommodation in Scotland, qualified for a substantial six figure sum from the Scottish Government’s Rural and Islands Housing Fund. CPG has used the money to convert a former old school house in Blairgowrie, Perthshire into eight properties, complete with secondary glazing, new flooring, private parking and disabled access.

The new properties at the former St. Stephen’s RC Primary School mark the latest affordable housing project for CPG, which also counts student and senior housing among its ventures. CPG is currently at work converting the former Chance Inn in Inverkeilor, Angus into affordable housing rentals.

CPG is believed to be the only private property developer to have received RIHF money. It has also worked with the Scottish Empty Homes Partnership on the Blairgowrie project, with SEHP providing support with grant and property applications.

Graeme Carling, co-founder with wife Leanne Carling of Carling Property Group, said the Blairgowrie properties were already attracting interest, proving that demand continues to be high for affordable housing across Scotland.

Graeme said: “We are delighted that the Scottish Government, via its Rural and Islands Housing Fund, has supported a private developer for the first time. As we expected, there has been strong interest in the apartments. This clearly demonstrates the need for more affordable housing in the area, and in Scotland. We remain committed to helping fill this gap but, sadly for those seeking affordable accommodation, there is still much work to be done in this sector.”

Graeme Brown, Director of Shelter Scotland, which hosts the Scottish Empty Homes Partnership on behalf of the Scottish Government, said:

“The conversion of this former school is a fantastic example of how empty properties can be part of the solution to Scotland’s shortage of affordable homes. Particularly in more rural communities it can be much more cost-effective to renovate existing empty homes or convert empty non-residential buildings to housing rather than start building from scratch on a greenfield site.”

CPG’s project in Blairgowrie features seven one-bedroom and one studio apartments, with rents starting at £250 a month. The properties are being let through the Perth and Kinross Council-run PKC Lets. Priority is being given to those working in the local area, over-55s and applicants with medical needs.

To find out more about Carling Property Group visit www.carlingpropertygroup.com

 

Carling Property Group enters student market with affordable rentals

Property and investment firm Carling Property Group has entered the student accommodation market with the acquisition of Alloway Halls, formerly owned by Abertay University. The Dundee-based company is to turn the halls of residence into affordable student housing, with rents at a lower rate than when the University owned them.

Announcing the news, owner Graeme Carling invited John Alexander, Convenor of Neighborhood Services, to view the property, now called Kingsway Apartments. The price for the halls, which are already taking tenants, is £80 per week.

With more than two decades in property development and investment, Graeme and wife Leanne are now Scotland’s largest private residential landlords and are making a name for themselves in delivering quality affordable private sector housing to the Scottish rental market.

Graeme Carling, co-founder of Carling Property Group along with Leanne, said:

“There is a distinct shortage of quality, affordable housing in Scotland, including in the student market. We believe our acquisition of Alloway Halls and the rental rates we are setting will go a little way to addressing that issue in Dundee.

“We had a number of ideas for what to do with the property, but then spotted a gap in the market for good accommodation for students that is not outside of their reach financially. We’re excited to be dipping our toe into the student market.”

John Alexander added:

“Demand for decent, affordable housing in Scotland is at an all-time high, and with reports showing that demand is outstripping supply, it’s heartening to see investors like the Carlings trying to fill a much-needed gap. The Kingsway Apartments project is proof that quality needn’t be compromised in return for affordability.”

Carling Property Group owns and manages 350 rental properties all over Scotland with most in the Dundee and Arbroath area. The company is on course to increase its portfolio to 1,000 properties within the next five years.

To find out more about Carling Property Group visit www.carlingpropertygroup.com

Carling Property Group acquire Alloway Halls in Dundee and become Scotland’s largest independent residential landlord

Dundee property and investment firm Carling Property Group has this week confirmed the acquisition of Alloway Halls in Dundee from Abertay University in a seven figure deal that sees them take the lead as Scotland’s largest independent residential landlord.

The 148 tenancies secured in the purchase of the building, takes Carling Property Group’s portfolio to over 350 properties making them the biggest independent group in Scotland and one of the biggest in the UK.

The Group last year took the award for Most Outstanding Affordable Housing Provider in the UK 2015 at the UK Over 50s Housing Awards and this latest addition to their portfolio puts them firmly on track to own 1000 properties within the next 5 years.

Graeme Carling, co-founder of Carling Property Group, commented:

“We are delighted to have successfully acquired Alloway Halls from the University of Abertay who were an absolute pleasure to deal with. This is a significant purchase for our business and is part of a multi-million pound plan for the site. There’s a tangible shortage of quality affordable housing in Scotland, and a collection of well-maintained properties like this will help us to plug that gap.

“The residential property investment market is a volatile landscape for small operators at the moment and, with the introduction of new tax changes, investment in this sector will undoubtedly become increasingly difficult. As a sustainable business with the intent to provide affordable housing at our core, Carling Property Group believe scale is vitally important to ensuring the future of affordable housing in the UK providing good quality and value for tenants and we’re well on track to achieving those aims.”

Situated to the north of Dundee, Alloway Halls were built by the University in the 1980s and enjoy excellent views of the Sidlaw Hills with easy access to the main travel routes in to and out of the city centre. They were refurbished by the University in recent years and, as well as the student accommodation blocks of which there are three, the purchase also includes two on-site three-bedroomed caretakers’ bungalows.

The deal was part financed by The Bank of Scotland, and overseen by McVey and Murricane in Glasgow, one of Scotland’s largest conveyancing practices.

To find out more about Carling Property Group visit www.carlingpropertygroup.com