ESCALATING maintenance bills have triggered a public housing selloff in Stockton, with up to 20 homes earmarked for sale this year.
There are 174 public housing properties in Stockton, including 111 units, 60 cottages and three villas.
Several Land and Housing Corporation homes were auctioned late last year, including a waterfront cottage in Barrie Crescent with 270-degree views of Stockton Beach that sold for $650,000.
Another beachfront home in Barrie Crescent and a cottage with river views in Stone Street will be auctioned in coming weeks.
Housing NSW sources told the Newcastle Herald that all Stockton cottages would be sold over the coming years due to a blowout in maintenance costs.
It is understood that two new homes can be purchased in some Hunter suburbs for the same price as a waterfront Stockton property.
A Land and Housing Corporation spokesman confirmed it had identified 20 cottages suitable for sale this year.
He said Housing NSW managed tenant relocation, with people able to nominate a preferred location.
‘‘We regularly review all dwellings ... to identify those that no longer meet needs and are suitable for sale,’’ he said.
‘‘Each sale is assessed against a criteria, and sales to tenants are also considered on a case-by-case basis.’’
The spokesman said money from the sales would be re-invested in property that better meets tenants’ needs.
In 2010 the NSW Government announced the selloff of 16 historic public housing terraces dubbed Boatman’s Row in Newcastle East.
Public housing estates in Windale and Bolton Point have been broken up over a decade, with more than 120 homes sold.