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07/09/2017

Other News In Brief

Homes Evacuated In Newtownabbey Security Alert

A number of homes have been evacuated following a security alert in Newtownabbey.

A suspicious object was found in the Mayfield Village area on Thursday, 07 September.

No further details have been released.

Man Convicted Of Benefit Fraud

A man has been convicted for claiming £16,615 benefits he was not entitled to at Omagh Magistrates’ Court.

Brian Armstrong claimed Pension Credit and Housing Benefit totalling £16,615 while failing to declare his partner’s employment. He was given a three month prison sentence suspended for 12 months.

The fraud was uncovered following an investigation by the Department for Communities.

He is also required to repay any outstanding money wrongfully obtained to the Department.

7% Rise In Co-Ownership Applications In NI

Applications for Co-ownership Housing in Northern Ireland has risen by 7% in the past financial year, according to the Northern Ireland Federation of Housing Associations (NIFHA).
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Throughout the organisation's almost 40-year history, it has successfully supported over 26,000 households to purchase the home of their choice and has funding in place to support a further 900 prospective home-owners in Northern Ireland get on the property ladder by March 2018.

Over 8,000 homes across Northern Ireland are currently Co-Ownership homes.

Mark Graham, Chief Executive at Co-Ownership Housing, said: "It is our goal to support as many people as we can to get on to the property ladder in Northern Ireland. Throughout our Shared Ownership Month in September we will be hosting a series of drop-in sessions across Northern Ireland in Derry-Londonderry, Dungannon and Belfast to support and advise on the range of products available to get on the path to becoming a homeowner, including our latest Rent to Own product.

"We know that struggling to raise deposits and lower incomes in Northern Ireland is fuelling demand for Co-Ownership. Buying through Co-Ownership is cheaper than renting, and more affordable than placing a significant deposit on a property. Additionally, customers can buy Co-Ownership out at any time through the 'staircasing' process which we actively encourage.

"Gradually increasing a purchaser’s share in their chosen property through staircasing not only guides that individual toward complete ownership of their home in an affordable way, but long-term this helps us to support more people make that first step toward home-ownership."

(CD)

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