Sunday, December 5, 2021
Real EstateUK

PA Housing, Accent in talks over potential merger

Midlands

PA owns nearly 23,200 homes in London, Surrey and the Midlands, while Accent owns nearly 20,700 homes across the Midlands, North and South East of England

PA Housing and Accent announced last week that talks are taking place over a potential merger to create a 44,000-home landlord.

PA, which was formed in 2017 following a merger between Paragon Community Housing and Asra Housing Group, owns nearly 23,200 homes in London, Surrey and the Midlands.

Accent owns a stock of nearly 20,700 homes across the Midlands, North and South East of England.

Dilip Kavi, chief executive of PA, told Inside Housing: A combined organisation would focus on delivering faster service improvements for all our customers in communities in the North, Midlands and South of England, fully embracing the new approach on consumer regulation.

We believe we already have a huge range of things in common. We are committed to improving services faster, we want to make a dramatic, positive difference in our communities and we want customers to be at the centre of everything we do, he said. We believe the opportunity exists for us to create an organisation whose combined strengths can do even more for customers.

Paul Dolan, chief executive of Accent, added: Our aim is to provide sector-leading customer service, delivering well on what matters most to customers and to create opportunities to make a lasting difference to society by helping to address the wide range of challenges facing our communities.

Early discussions have indicated that the two organisations are “matched in values and ambition, both with an unwavering commitment to deliver top customer service”, Mr Dolan said.

The social housing sector is currently seeing an added emphasis on services for existing residents, with the government’s recent publication of the Social Housing White Paper promising an overhaul of consumer regulation and the Housing Ombudsman significantly increasing its powers.

Both PA and Accent have G1/V1 gradings for governance and financial viability from the Regulator of Social Housing, the highest possible rating.

In 2019 PA moved the management and delivery of its repairs service for homes in the capital from the Midlands to the South East.

Earlier this month, Accent completed a 284-home stock transfer to Sanctuary Supported Living, with executives conceding that it had become “difficult for us to provide that quality of service our residents deserve”.

A merger between PA and Accent would create a 1,000-plus workforce and have a turnover of over £250m.

PA has plans to build 6,000 affordable homes by 2030, while Accent has 1,500 homes in its pipeline set to be completed by 2024.

They said a combined organisation would seek to build at least as many homes.

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