West of England housing association Merlin has announced a further year on year increase in surplus and operating margin at year end.
The surplus of £13m, an increase of £2.5m from the previous year, will be used to support the organisation’s expanding development programme, and continued investment in existing homes.
Sue O’Neill, Merlin’s Finance & Resources Director said: “The result has been achieved by our absolute focus on financial discipline – increasing our operating margin again to 36%, up from 34% last year and 27% the year before, increasing turnover and keeping an iron grip on our rent arrears at just 1%.”
”We’ve committed every penny of the surplus back into maintaining our existing homes and building new ones. During the year we invested £21m in developing new affordable homes, completing 131, and just as importantly increased the number of homes under construction to 421.
“In the next year, we plan to complete 235 affordable homes with in excess of 300 completions due in 2018-19.”
£14m was invested in existing homes over the year and included the refurbishment of more than 200 non-traditional properties and a programme of upgrades to Independent Living Community homes. In the year to come Merlin has committed to spend £16.5m on maintaining and improving existing homes.
Read the full Financial Statements 2016-17 [pdf] 2MB