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Locals gathered at the Lake Wanaka Centre last month to hear about additional affordable homes coming to Wanaka.

In six to eight weeks, the Community Housing Trust Queenstown Lakes will be opening expressions of interest for five new affordable secure homes in Northlake.

Housing services manager Corina Sommerville said she had noticed people wanting to shift away from renting and into home ownership since Covid.

Affordable housing options…the foundations have been laid for the new five secure homes in Northlake.

“Pre-Covid we had more renting. I feel now people are wanting to put roots down,” she said

The trust offered a staggered, supportive approach towards independent home ownership.

It provided public housing, rental alternatives and secure homes.

To provide the secure home affordable option, the trust retained the ownership of the land while the new home› owner bought the house.

Lilian Puentes, a single mother of three teenagers, said she found it hard to become a homeowner, despite working a well›paid, full›time job.

“My kids are still dependent on me, and I have to provide for them,” she said.

She originally lived in Queenstown and due to external circumstances, moved to Wanaka.

As a single income earner she has still found it challenging.

Ms Puentes was hopeful the secure home option could provide ongoing support and security for her family.

Affordable housing options…the foundations have been laid for the new five secure homes in Northlake.

In Northlake, a secure home could cost about $480,000.

The land was purchased from the developer in early 2021 and donated to the trust through the inclusionary zoning process.

Four secure homes currently exist in Wanaka, with some of those in the adjacent Hikuwai subdivision.

Expressions of interest for the secure homes will be opening in the next six to eight weeks and available on the Community Housing Trust Queenstown Lakes website.