Community-led housing gets £60m boost

A new £60 million fund will help almost 150 councils tackle the problem of high levels of second homeownership in their communities.

The Community Housing Fund, announced by Housing Minister Gavin Barwell, aims to help local groups deliver affordable housing for first-time buyers.

Second home ownership in England is at an all-time high and is crowding out first time buyers and causing a shortage of available properties, with many second homes remaining empty for long periods of time.

The funding will be targeted at the community-led housing sector and distributed to groups via local councils who know their area’s needs best. One third of the funding - almost £20 million - will be allocated directly to local authorities in the South West as this is the most popular region for second homes in England - with a figure of 21 per cent.

Planning applications for community-led housing are currently approved more often than other applications.

Barwell said: “The high number of second homes can be a frustration for many who struggle to find an affordable home in their community.

“This new fund will help tackle that by boosting supply and make sure community groups are at the heart of delivering new homes so that this is a country that works for everyone.

“I saw for myself the great work community land trusts do on a recent visit to Cornwall and we want them to do much, much more.”

Supplier Profiles