Planners in Winchester have received the unusual submission from a portfolio landlord, but it’s not clear if the offer of very low rent will continue after the crisis.

An Eastleigh landlord hopes to have her HMO planning application fast-tracked so she can house key workers during the crisis at a knock-down rent.

Jasvinder Sohal has applied to Winchester Council for change of use to the house in Fox Lane in the city (pictured) and hopes it can process her application more quickly.

She’s already paid for extensive renovations and expects it to be ready in early May.

Sohal, whose family operates a substantial property portfolio in the area, says: “I bought 68 Fox Lane when it was uninhabitable with a view to renovate and let it out to a family. Due to the proximity of the property to Winchester hospital, I would now like to help NHS key workers to find a place to live while they deal with the current pandemic we are facing, for a nominal rent of only £10 a week for the next six months.” 

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The landlady says she has already been contacted by a nurse asking for help with finding somewhere to live near a hospital. 

She says although a council official has told her that going through the process of applying for change of use from C3 to C4 usually takes eight weeks, she hopes her application can be prioritised so it can be dealt with more quickly.

Adds Sohal: “The maximum number of tenants the property could house is four altogether. By helping four NHS key workers to find somewhere to stay over these crucial weeks and months, I hope I will be doing my bit to help.”

Planners and councillors are still processing the application.


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