23,000 community led homes at risk if government fund isn’t renewed

23,000 affordable community-led homes may not be built unless the government renews its £163m Community Housing Fund, a new report has suggested.

Commissioned by a consortium of charities, the report found that the now-closed £163m Community Housing Fund has stimulated significant growth in the sector but the current pipeline of activity is under threat due to the fund’s closure.

According to the report, nearly 900 community-led housing groups are developing homes across England and the pipeline figure of 23,000 community-led homes is four times the estimate from just three years ago (5,810 homes).

However, the funding required to see these homes built over five years would total up to £260.5m outside of London.

The National CLT Network is leading a campaign for the Community Housing Fund to be extended for a further five years in the Spring Budget.

Over 60 MPs have been contacted by groups concerned for the future of their affordable housing projects should the Fund not continue.

Catherine Harrington, co-chief executive of the National Community Land Trust Network, said: ‘The community-led housing movement is waiting with bated breath. If the Community Housing Fund is not extended in the Spring Budget it would have devastating consequences.

‘As our new research shows, the 18-months that the Fund was open has rapidly expanded the community housing movement. Nearly 1000 groups have projects, many of which are ‘oven-ready’. These are affordable homes that are backed by the community and are unlikely to be built by traditional developers.

‘We urge the government to make good on its manifesto commitment and renew the Community Housing Fund for a further five years next week.’

In related news, a new community housing fund launched that could help thousands of affordable homes be built across the UK.

The new fund is being led by CAF Venturesome, the social investment arm of the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF). Since 2008, they’ve provided more than £5m in social investment to build 190 affordable new homes, with 470 in the pipeline through their Community Land Trust (CLT) Funds and the new fund plans to support up to 1,000 more.

Photo Credit – Thomas Barrett


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