A Bute-based housing association is to receive a £400,000 loan from a major credit union to help fund a major repairs programme.
Fyne Homes, which has its HQ in Rothesay’s Victoria Street but manages social housing throughout Bute, Cowal, Mid Argyll and Kintyre, will receive the loan after joining up as a corporate member of the Scotwest credit union in what is believed to be a UK first.
The development follows a recent change in legislation to allow credit unions to offer services to community groups.
Fyne Homes’ chief executive Colin Renfrew said: “Housing associations such as ours require borrowing facilities from a range of providers and we were delighted to include Scotwest in the latest round of tenders.
“They worked closely with us to ensure that this unique arrangement was delivered smoothly and we are delighted to join Scotwest as a corporate member as we feel we share a similar ethos.”
The ten-year loan, which is secured on existing properties, will be used to by Fyne Homes to make improvements to its current housing stock.
Kenny MacLeod, chief executive of Scotwest, said: “Whilst this is primarily a business transaction, the social and ethical aims of Fyne Homes fit with that of Scotwest and we are proud that they have become our first corporate member.”
Deirdre Forsyth, the credit union’s chair, added: “Having broken ground with Fyne Homes, we have made the decision to offer this facility to the rest of the housing association market within the Strathclyde area.”
The picture shows (L-R) Kenny MacLeod, Scotwest chief executive; Deirdre Forsyth, Scotwest chair; Fyne Homes director Peter Lingard; and Colin Renfrew, the housing association’s chief executive.