Decision details

Purchase of property to support vulnerable care leavers

Decision Maker: Cabinet member contracts and assets

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes


To approve the purchase of a residential property in Hereford in order to provide supported accommodation for vulnerable people with complex needs.


The council faces challenges in finding accommodation for vulnerable people with complex needs. Social housing providers have to prioritise commercial considerations and are often unwilling to take the risk of letting homes to this user group. The council therefore needs to find alternative accommodation solutions which are economic and sustainable. The property proposed for purchase will be used to accommodate five very vulnerable care leavers to improve outcomes and help prevent specialist high cost placements.


It is proposed to purchase a residential property in Hereford City Centre from the open market and make appropriate arrangements for housing management and the usage of rental income. It is ideally located and there is a time limited opportunity in which to acquire it.



(a)   The acquisition, improvement and refurbishment of a property to provide accommodation for vulnerable care leavers be approved within a budget of not more than £740k; and

(b)   the acting assistant director for technical services be authorised to take all operational decisions necessary to complete the purchase and commissioning of improvement and refurbishment works.


Alternative options considered:

1.          Do not acquire this property. This option is not recommended as it would not enable improved outcomes for this vulnerable group or provision of transitional support to more independent living. There would be a continuing risk of escalating mental or physical health needs, substance misuse or anti-social behaviour, leading to some individuals being admitted to high cost specialist placements. Registered housing providers are unable or unwilling to accept the risk perceived in relation to this user group.


Reason Key: Expenditure;

Wards Affected: (All Wards);

Details of any declarations of interest: None


There has been general consultation and engagement with care leavers and looked after young people since 2016 in relation to accommodation and support needs and how those are best met. responses have highlighted the need for accommodation with appropriate levels of support for those with complex needs.

Contact: Suzanne Garlick, Estates management officer commercial Email: Tel: 01432 260689.

Publication date: 04/01/2019

Date of decision: 04/01/2019

Effective from: 10/01/2019

Accompanying Documents: