Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Funding

How are Haig Housing Trust funding the new development in Morden?

The Ministry of Defence provided £9 million from the Veterans Accommodation Fund, set up using some of the fines imposed on financial institutions involved in fixing the LIBOR interest rates. Haig Housing has funded an additional £6 million themselves.

About the Estate

How did Haig Housing Trust decide on the proposal to provide up to 68 homes on the Morden estate?

The Trust appointed a project team that included architects and development consultants to advise on issues relating to building on the estate including both planning and heritage concerns.

From the funding available Haig was able to plan for 76 new units of housing. The first phase was opened in December 2017 by the Chief of Defence Personnel, Lieutenant General Richard Nugee CVO CBE, transforming a previously disused café and warden’s house into 8 x 1 bedroom maisonettes set in an attractive u-shaped courtyard. These properties were specifically designed as transitional homes for service leavers to assist them in settling into civilian life. The second phase consists of these 68 new homes adjacent to the existing Rhodes Moorhouse Court.

Why Morden and not elsewhere?

The need for Veterans’ housing is increasing and the Trust is looking at ways to build or acquire more properties to help in the areas of highest demand. While we would seek to do this nationally we are also constrained be the availability of sites. Using land we already own and occupy in Morden was the rational choice; saving money on land purchases meant we could therefore maximise the number of units we could deliver. Another factor that influenced our decision was that the majority of our applicants wish to live in the south of England and, in particular, around the London area. Moreover, the Morden estate has excellent transport links, being situated close to Morden Underground (in Zone on the Northern Line) and only minutes away from bus routes and the Thameslink commuter line.

How many homes could be built on all the sites?

Existing estate land for up to new 180 homes was identified.

We consulted existing estate beneficiaries on a “masterplan” that showed all construction options – but it was always only intended to build 76 at this time as this was all that the available funding permitted. If additional funding becomes available in the future then the Trust will once again consult with residents, the council and other stakeholders before deciding on where best to build further.

When will the new development be finished?

The homes are due for completion from May 2019

Will the new build be fully furnished?

No, the properties will be provided with floor coverings including carpets but tenants will be expected to provide their own furniture and white goods.

About the Housing

How many one bedroom, two bedroom, three bedroom and four bedroom homes are proposed?

The development will provide 23 x 1 bed, 22 x 2 bed, 19 x 3 bed and 4 x 4 bed flats, bungalows and houses of which 7 will be specially adapted for full wheelchair access. This mix of different sized homes was informed by a detailed review of our waiting list data and tocomplement the existing mix on our estates.

People Involved

How were the Architects selected? Have you worked with them in the past?

We selected Haines Phillips as our appointed architects to produce a feasibility study in January 2015 as they had worked with the Trust successfully on previous developments at Woolwich in 2003/04, Hart Square in 2001 and 2005/06 and the Café site in 2013, all on the Morden estate. Our experience is that Haines Phillips understands the area and our organisation well.

Who else is involved in the Project?

The project will be delivered by:

Client: Haig Housing

Architect and principle designer: Haines Phillips Architects

Principle contractor: United Living

Project management: Red Loft

Employer’s agent and Clerk of Work: Hunters

Local Authority: London Borough of Merton.

Who is eligible?

Are the new homes for new applicants or will existing tenants whether living at Morden or elsewhere be allowed to transfer to them?

Haig aims to create a mixed and balanced community, and the new homes will be available to all ex-service applicants including existing tenants, new applicants and nominees from the council who qualify as ex-Service men and women.

Who from existing tenants will be eligible to apply for these new homes? Is there any priority to be considered?

We will consider transferring existing tenants who have a demonstrable housing need such as currently being in an overcrowded or under occupied home, or who have particular medical needs that will be better met by these new homes, especially those that are wheelchair adapted.

How do I know if I qualify for Haig Housing?

You need to have served in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces for a minimum of 4 years if you enlisted after 2001 or 3 years if prior to 2001. If you were medically discharged earlier due to a service injury you will also be eligible to apply but you must have completed your basic training and been deployed.

Applicants will also be considered from the following although they will have a lower priority:

  • Widows/widowers (with or without dependent children) of a service person who would have qualified as above.
  • A separated or divorced spouse/partner/civil partner of a service person (either still serving or already discharged) with children under the age of 18 and still in full time education living with them.

Application Process

How do I apply?

You can apply online via our website www.haighousing.org.uk. You can also download and print an application form from the website to complete and send back to us by post. If you do not have access to the internet you can also call us on 020 8685 5777 to request for an application pack.

What is the waiting period?

There is no waiting period as such.

Everyone who applies for housing in Morden will be considered both for the new scheme and for other vacancies in Morden, including those that become available when some existing tenants transfer into the new scheme. Applicants are already being processed for the new properties so if you would like to be considered for the scheme please apply as soon as possible to increase your chances of being offered one of these!

Can I still apply if in debt?

We carry out a credit check on applicants who have been shortlisted for a property. We know sometimes applicants have got into debt but as long as the debt is controlled and being repaid we will still consider your application. We also consider anyone who has an IVA or been made bankrupt. However, we will not usually accept anyone with an extant County Court Judgement (ie unless and until it has been satisfied or paid off in full)

Rents

When is my rent due?

The rent is due in advance and you can pay this weekly, fortnightly or monthly by a bank Standing Order or rent payment card. If you require any more information please contact the Income Team on: 020 8685 0892

Will I require home insurance?

We insure the building itself but it is the tenant’s responsibility to provide their own contents insurance for their belongings. We strongly advise tenants to take out contents insurance because if something happens and their belongings/furniture etc are damaged then it is not the Trust’s responsibility to replace these.

Other

When did Haig receive confirmation from the Government that they had been successful with their bid for the Morden estate?

In June 2014. Our Chief Executive, James Richardson, sent a letter to tenants in July 2014 while a press release was also sent to the media and other interested parties.

Have Merton Council advised you of some sites on the estate where planning permission is very unlikely to be given?

The Morden estate lies within a conservation area and neither Haig nor the Council want the aesthetics of the estate to be compromised. Haig worked closely with the Council in producing its masterplan of potential development sites across the Morden estate before identifying the best of these.