When it was completed in the late summer of 2009, Chips brought to the market a unique proposition; high quality affordable design open to first time buyers.
Chips was designed by renowned architect Will Alsop who had a vision to create a building which resembled ‘three fat chips’ atop eachother. What was ultimately created was a building which makes its presence known on Manchester’s skyline. Nine stories high, its vivid colours, etchings on each ‘chip’ - the building carries the names of all of Greater Manchester’s waterways – it now houses 142 apartments as well as a mixture of commercial spaces.
Each apartment boasts fantastic design credentials, with bright coloured partitions, fully fitted kitchens, bathrooms – some en-suites – spacious bedrooms, and most importantly floor to ceiling glazing throughout, enabling superb views across the City Centre and East Manchester. Some of the apartments also feature balconies.
The building itself sits within New Islington, a developing district in Manchester City Centre, adjacent to the much celebrated ‘Northern Quarter’ and boasting a canal flanking each of the site’s perimeters. Once complete, New Islington will boast shops, pubs and bars, a tram stop, health centre, and 3,000 metres of canal side promenade space.
In July 2009, working with the Homes and Communities Agency, Urban Splash launched Rent to HomeBuy at the building, an affordability product backed by the Government. This announcement was crucial and helped make Chips an affordable and accessible place to live for first time buyers and those who weren’t in a position to make an outright purchase. Eligible customers had two options; primarily they could rent their home at 80% of the market rent. With this option, prices started from just £400 per month, thus allowing our customers to save for a deposit.
Secondly, eligible customers could also buy anything from 25% to 75% equity in their home, with the remaining equity stake funded through an interest free Government loan. This option helped bridge the gap consumers were finding when trying to purchase their homes and meet the heavy deposit requests of their banks.
The product was available on a range of homes; including one and two bedroom apartments, on different floors of the building and as of July this year all Urban Splash Rent to HomeBuy units had been occupied by customers, reinforcing the strength of the product.