Communities will be given more opportunities to build homes in their neighbourhood, thanks to a new £4m government grant programme.
The new fund will help community groups meet a range of costs incurred in trying to develop housing, including paying for searches, administration costs or legal advice, design work and planning applications.
The Community Housing Fund Revenue Programme is funded by Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and will help community-led housing groups in the latter stages of pre-development.
Housing minister, Rt Hon Christopher Pincher MP, said: ‘Community-led housing is about local people playing a leading and lasting role in solving their housing problems, creating genuinely affordable homes and strong communities where mainstream housebuilders are unable to deliver.
‘The Community Housing Fund has been set up to support housing schemes that are truly community-led and will last for generations to come, helping ensure we build back better.’
The grant programme will be managed by the Community Led Homes Partnership (CLH), made up of the Confederation of Co-operative Housing, Locality, National Community Land Trust Network, and UK Cohousing Network, who will assess all applications and administer the grants.
Tom Chance from Community Led Homes said: ‘Community led housing groups are rooted in their communities and truly understand local housing needs. There are so many fantastic community led housing projects planned across the country. This programme will help many of these projects come to fruition.’
Tony Armstrong from Community Led Homes added: ‘It is well known that there is a shortage of genuinely affordable, high-quality housing in England. We believe community led housing can, and should, play a central role in solving this problem. The CLH partnership is proud to be managing this programme on behalf of MHCLG.’
Applications are now open and will remain so until all funds are allocated or until 31 December, with all funded work expected to be complete by March 2022.
You can find out more about the fund and apply here.
In related news, tens of thousands of people across England are set to benefit from warmer, greener social homes, as the government gives social housing providers the opportunity to bid for funding to improve their stock.
Photo by James Feaver