Last year we set out our ambition for OX Place. That included building 2,000 new homes in the city over the next decade and an absolute commitment to making sure these homes are high quality, genuinely affordable and built to the highest environmental standards.
Over the course of the year, we started to realise that ambition, with the completion of our first two developments: The Curve and Cannon Court.
Helen Horne, Managing Director.
Our very first OX Place owners and tenants moved into their new homes, not only making their dreams a reality, but proving that the OX Place business model – one motivated by the aims of housing local people and investing in Oxford services over private profit – works.
If these new homes are the shiny beacon of hope for people who want to live in Oxford, then the work that has been going on behind the scenes is the fuel that keeps that beacon alight.
Our team has grown and matured and an independent governance audit and review gives us the confidence that we are a stable and sustainable company with longevity. Local people can put their faith in OX Place and our ability to deliver on our promises.
2022 was not without its challenges. The rising cost of construction materials has required careful budget management and maintenance of our supplier relationships.
In addition, rising interest rates have severely impacted the ability of some of our prospective homeowners to secure mortgages against new homes.
The combination of these elements has meant we have had to be more focussed than ever on our shared ambitions and securing the future of people in Oxford.
In financial year 2022/23, we handed over 90 new homes. Of these, 53 were for social rent through Oxford City Council, 32 were sold on a shared ownership basis, giving local people the opportunity to buy a share of a property that they can call their own, and five were for affordable rent.
The majority of homes we have developed so far have been one and two bedroom apartments, but we have also built apartments and homes suitable for families. These bigger homes have enabled people to move on from cramped and unsuitable accommodation to beautiful new homes that are affordable to rent or buy and, thanks to our commitment to high building standards and renewable energy, are affordable to run.