Who doesn’t like Ikea? A Sunday trip to the shop searching for inspiration for your home and to browse countless shelves of house related products is a ritual for many. It’s fairly safe to say that we all have at least one Ikea product in our homes. But soon entire homes could be bought from Ikea, now that the Swedish flat-pack giant enters the UK’s housing market.
Ikea’s first housing deal in the UK
A council in the south of England is looking to work with Ikea and construction firm Skanska owned developer BoKlok, to deliver up to 162 affordable homes to Worthing where homes typically cost more than 11 times average salaries.
BoKlok whose name translates to “live smart”, has been in operation since the early 90s and has built over 11,000 homes across Sweden, Finland and Norway. This will be its first venture into the UK.
The homes, ranging from one bedroom flats measuring 50 sq metres to three bedroom flats of 74 sq metres, will be constructed offsite and assembled on location. They will be sold for a price “a single parent can afford,” without compromising the quality.
“The fact that these homes can be built quickly, to a high quality and meet top environmental standards makes this as extremely attractive proposition” – said Councillor Kevin Jenkins, Worthing Borough Council’s Executive Member for Regeneration.
He added: “In this current market it’s extremely tough for local people who are in full-time work to get on the housing market.”
“This proposal could change that, giving these hard-working individuals a genuine chance to buy their own home without having to move out of the town.”
Meeting housing needs of families
The Worthing Council, instead of selling the land to BoKlok, would lease it for 125 years as part of the deal and receive ground rent at estimated 4% on the land’s value. It would also retain 30% of the properties that could be let to low income tenants at affordable prices.
Councillor Jenkins explained: “This is an example of taking the lead in utilising land that is in our control to actually meet the growing need of our families that want to get into the housing market.”
“I think it’s really, really important and demonstrates we are prepared to break the model, step outside and be adventurous in what we do and take Worthing forward.”
Construction works could start in September 2020, with the first homes being delivered in January 2021. If the project is successful, a further 500 homes may follow.