Shetland Islands Council has approved a loan of £300,000 to building firm BA Builders to allow for new homes to be constructed in rural areas.
The loan is designed to create 13 modern and energy efficient homes which is in fitting the council’s strategic objectives to encourage people to remain in Shetland and contribute to the economy through work.
Brian Anderson, owner of BA Builders, based in Burra, said: “Accessing funding for property development has not been easy and without Council funding, we couldn’t have gone ahead with this project.
“We started the build on the first house in Burra in February and already have interest from prospective buyers for this house and future builds. I’d encourage folk to get in touch at an early stage if they are interested.”
The pilot project is a first for Shetland Islands Council, who have never provided loans to local businesses for house building before.
Alastair Cooper, chairman of the council’s Development Committee said: “Housing is a key part of the 10-year plan to ensure that people can live, work, study and invest in Shetland.
“This is a positive project to provide highly energy-efficient and affordable family houses which are very much in demand.
“Historically, the construction industry has not been a sector supported by the council; however BA Builders approached the Council having exhausted all other funding sources.
“Demand for future house building loans will be monitored and we may review our policy so that we can support other housing developments in this way.”