Shortlist announced for social houses in Tauranga

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The Government has requested formal proposals from four respondents looking to purchase and manage social houses in Tauranga and Invercargill, Ministers Bill English and Paula Bennett said today.

As announced last January, the Government proposes to transfer 1,000 to 2,000 Housing New Zealand Corporation houses and tenancies to registered Community Housing Providers.

The shortlisted respondents are the Pact Group for Invercargill, and Accessible Properties, Hapori Connect Tauranga and Kainga Community Housing Partners for Tauranga.

Housing New Zealand Minister Bill English says the shortlisted respondents submitted high-quality Expressions of Interest (EOI) for the 348 properties and tenancies in Invercargill and 1124 properties and tenancies in Tauranga.

"These transactions are about tenants, ensuring they are being housed in properties that suit their needs and supporting those who are able to transition back into independence.

"I was particularly pleased at the number of EOI respondents with the capability, understanding and motivation to deliver a better service for tenants," he said.

"The Government is changing the social housing system because we want it to be aspirational instead of generational," Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett said.

"We expect the community housing sector should work with financiers and asset managers to share expertise and figure out innovative new ways of providing housing for our most vulnerable. Those on the shortlist have been thinking creatively and seriously about how to do this."

Those shortlisted will now proceed to the next stage in the procurement process, Request for Proposals, which will close on 30 May for Invercargill and 7 June for Tauranga.

The Government expects to announce the preferred bidder for each region in the third quarter of this year.

Further details about the Social Housing Reform Programme are available here; www.treasury.govt.nz/statesector/socialhousing

- Bay of Plenty Times

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