A former commercial building at Westwood House, Edinburgh has been transformed into residential properties available for mid-market rent. This new housing development marks LAR Housing Trust’s first commercial to residential conversion and it’s the biggest deal to date since the charity’s launch in October 2015.

LAR’s first venture into Edinburgh

“This is a significant moment in our short history,” said Andrew Robertson, LAR Chair.

He added: “Westwood House was our first deal in Edinburgh and, at 47 properties, our biggest completed development to date anywhere in Scotland.”

The multi-pound million development on Gorgie Road consists of 18 one bed, 27 two bed and 2 three bed apartments, and offers great top floors views towards the castle. It’s been in high demand, with all flats rented out after just two viewing sessions.

“There is no doubt that Edinburgh is in great need of quality mid-market rental homes”, commented Mr Robertson and expressed his gratitude to the Scottish Government and the City of Edinburgh Council for the continued support LAR has received.

Scottish Government’s financial support

Housing Minister Kevin Stewart MSP, who officially opened the Westwood House development, said: “I am pleased that the Scottish Government’s £55 million loan has enabled LAR Housing Trust to undertake a broad range of developments that contribute to the supply of new, affordable homes in Scotland.”

Kevin Stewart MSP with new LAR tenants Roddie Harend and Julien Lindsey

He continued: “This is another important milestone for LAR as it continues to deliver against its target of 1,000 affordable homes across Scotland. Working innovatively with partners like LAR is an example of how we are delivering our 50,000 target for new affordable homes, while also increasing the supply of housing options so everyone in Scotland has access to affordable, good quality homes that meet their needs.”

The conversion works were carried out by Clark Contracts.

Director, Michael Scanlan said: “It has been great to work with LAR Housing Trust and the design team on this exciting development and helping them tackle the shortage of mid-market rental homes across Scotland. We hope to continue our relationship with them in the future.”

LAR has also purchased 40 units at Elfin Square (next to Westwood House) which are due for completion in the next couple of months, and is actively looking for more development opportunities in Edinburgh.