Havering Council has started the process of buying back homes to be used as temporary accommodation for refugees.

In a series of decisions taken in recent weeks, the council has earmarked properties it is intending to purchase to house Ukrainian and Afghan refugees out of the funding granted to it by the Greater London Authority last year.

Councillor Paul McGeary, cabinet member for housing, had announced in July 2023 that the council had secured £6million for the purpose.

Under the scheme, the homes can be added to the council’s social housing stock to be re-let to local people after three years.

Read More: Council secures £6m in government funding for housing refugees

The council has said that buying back these properties will utilise the GLA’s time-bound funding and provide the council with additional units that can generate rental income in the future.

GLA’s grant reportedly covers 40 per cent of the cost of these homes. The purchase, the council said in its decision, will be subject to necessary legal due diligence.

The council said that in 2023 the borough hosted 124 Ukrainian families who were living either in temporary accommodation or with sponsor families.

These housing solutions were labelled as “ineffective” for refugees by a report as private rented homes were unaffordable for the council.