A DEVELOPER is aiming to deliver 400-500 homes a year for those who might otherwise not be able to buy.

AJC Homes was founded with the aim of becoming Dorset’s leading affordable housing builder.

It is a sister company of AJ Developments, which has been building homes in Dorset for almost a decade.

AJC director David Cracklen said: “There is an acute shortage of affordable housing in the region caused by several factors.

“Years of a lack of volume in house building has meant the cost of open-market housing has outstripped wages in Dorset dramatically.

“Records suggest that although the average house price in the area is commensurate or a little higher than the rest of the country, the average salary in many parts of the region is less than half that of the rest of the country.

“We believe that in conjunction with our housing association partners we can deliver a significant amount of dedicated social housing across the region. It is our plan to be building between 400-500 new houses a year by 2025 and aim to deliver sites that are 100 per cent affordable in nature.”

The company points to research by housing charity Shelter which suggests almost 95 per cent of properties in the south west are not affordable for families.

The charity supported several key areas where the problem was particularly acute – including Weymouth, Portland and North Dorset.

The business plans to grow to deliver 500 new homes a year between now and 2025, delivering the homes on behalf of registered providers and local authorities.

Mr Cracklen said: “We have a huge challenge ahead but that also means we have a real opportunity to change the landscape of affordable housing across our county for a whole generation; a generation who, until now, have been unfairly priced out of the market.”

AJC Homes recently held an opening ceremony for its new offices in Market Street, Poole, and officially launched the affordable housing construction business.