Community-led Housing

Find out about funding available for Community-led Housing projects.

Start-up support for community-led housing

Locality and our national partners are currently seeking funding from government to develop a Start-up support grant which will help all types of community-led housing projects to get going.

This will help groups and projects at an early stage, to help explore different approaches, undertake community consultation, become incorporated and identify a site if required. This will support groups to be ready to apply to Homes England for revenue funding through the Community Housing Fund.

The National CLT Network currently has a start-up support package if you are looking to become a Community Land Trust.

Find out more details

Community Housing Fund – Phase 1

About the fund

The Homes England Community Housing Fund Prospectus was launched on the 2nd July 2018. It confirms the Government is making £163 million available across England through the Community Housing Fund (CHF) up until March 2020. This offers a significant opportunity for community organisations to grow and realise their aspirations to meet local housing needs.

The CHF is split into two phases. Only the first phase was launched with the Prospectus. It includes revenue funding for capacity building and pre-development costs; as well as capital funding for infrastructure costs which will support community-led housing. Capital funding to support the costs of building, converting or refurbishing community-led housing will be covered in the second phase.

Revenue funding

Homes England is now inviting applications from groups for the revenue funding. Eligible organisations include registered charities, companies limited by guarantee, community benefit societies, community interest companies and other organisations operating as social enterprises. Local authorities and Registered Providers may also apply and community organisations can also ask them to do so on their behalf.

Funding will be available to local authorities who wish to support community organisations looking to develop community-led housing, for example, through advice services.

The revenue grants are to help groups cover the costs of “project-specific activities” that will support the development of community-led housing. This includes the costs of group capacity building; professional fees, e.g. for feasibility or design work, and costs related to planning applications and business planning.

Capital infrastructure funding

Homes England is also inviting applications for the capital infrastructure funding, but this is only open to bidding by local authorities. This will cover small-scale infrastructure projects which support a community housing development. Such as building access roads, flood reduction measures and site remediation.

Community organisations may ask their local authority to submit an application on their behalf.

How to apply

Members thinking of making applications should be aware that phase one of the CHF will shut once funding is fully committed or on the 31 December 2019 – whichever happens earliest.

The Prospectus sets out the assessment criteria for bids covering value for money, deliverability and the strategic fit with the aims of the CHF. To apply you must submit details via the Homes England bidding portal: https://bids.homesengland.org.uk

Phase 2 Capital Funding for CLG housing – Capital funding for all tenures of CLH

This programme will fund a range of tenures in addition to funding affordable rent and shared ownership schemes. Affordable rent and shared ownership schemes can also be funded with capital grants through the existing Shared Ownership and Affordable Homes programme (SOAHP) 2016 to 2021.

Bidding is open for CHF Phase 2 to a range of organisations. As well as CLH groups, Local Authorities and Registered Providers may apply on behalf of community groups to support them through this process.

Grant requirements

The requirements for capital grants from Phase 2 of the CHF are the same as the SOAHP if you wish to be the landlord of sub-market rental properties.

Organisations intending to be the landlord of low-cost rental properties (funded by Homes England capital grant programmes) must be – or intend to become – registered as a provider of social housing (a ‘registered provider’) with the Social Housing Regulator (‘the Regulator’), before completion of any developments funded through those programmes and any payment of funding. It is not, however, a requirement to be a registered provider before applying for a Homes England capital grant.

The requirement to be a registered provider does not apply to organisations that will not act as the landlord of low-cost rental property. Where an organisation is delivering homes for low-cost homeownership – including shared ownership – for example, there is no requirement for that organisation to be a registered provider.

Interested in becoming a Registered Provider?

If you are interested in exploring becoming a Registered Provider, then Locality can help. We are working closely with a number of members to help them through the process.

Please contact Zoe Goddard on 07825 175868 or zoe.goddard@locality.org.uk for more information.

Grant closing dates

Bidding for both phases is via the Homes England Portal. This will remain open to new applications until funding is fully committed or until 31 December 2019, whichever occurs first.

Further details are available in the Prospectus and the Addendum to the Prospectus for Phase Two published on Gov.uk

View the addendum

Social Investment Business (SIB) Enterprise Grants

Enterprise Grants will support charities and social enterprises in England working in either the homelessness or youth sector to develop or grow their enterprising activity and earned income.

They are available through the Enterprise Development Programme, a five year, £40m programme funded by Access – The Foundation for Social Investment and managed by a coalition of partners.

Who is it for?

Initially, the programme will be aimed at charities and social enterprises based in England that operate in the following fields:
•    Homelessness
•    Youth services

What can I apply for?

Feasibility Grants
Between £5,000 – 10,000 to enable organisations to investigate and develop an enterprise proposition from the very earliest stage into a proposed delivery plan.

Enterprise Development Grants
More substantial grants of around £50,000 are available for organisations that have an enterprise proposition which requires further development or scaling, and where there is a potential requirement for subsequent investment

Am I eligible?

This programme is open to organisations that :
•    Are charities or social enterprises
•    Are based and work in England
•    Have a desire to generate income through enterprise
•    Can demonstrate clear social impact
•    Work in either the homelessness or youth services sector.

How do I apply?

You will first need to complete the online expression of interest form.

Complete the expression of interest

Nationwide Society – Community Grants

Nationwide Society is looking to fund local housing projects that will strengthen your local community by supporting the most vulnerable, and new approaches that increase the supply of housing or will reinvent renting for both tenants and landlords.

There are grants of up to £50,000 available for the revenue costs of developing your CLH project in the following areas:

• London
• South West
• South East
• East of England
• Central
• North West & North Midlands

They are inviting charities, Community Land Trusts and housing co-operatives to apply for grants of between £10,000 and £50,000 – either alone or as part of a joint bid.

Applications are now open until 5pm on Friday 7 December.

Find out more

Need help?

Try out the Advice Community Forum which connects people who are doing great things in their communities: ask a question on our online forum and get a community-sourced answer.

Visit the forum