Ecology supports a new toolkit for community-led housing

15 May 2018

As part of our commitment to supporting community-led housing, Ecology has helped fund the production and launch of a free online toolkit which is helping local authorities and housing associations promote, support and develop solutions that support people powered housing solutions.

The initiative has been led by HACT (Housing Action Charitable Trust), which acts as UK housing’s ideas and innovations agency, and was funded and supported by the Nationwide Foundation and LandAid as well as Ecology. The toolkit provides technical information, guidance and best practice examples to enable local authorities to deliver local community-led housing schemes.

Andrew van Doorn, Chief Executive of HACT explained,

“Community-led housing should be playing an important part in alleviating the shortage for housing across the UK.

“Too often, however, local authorities have been unsure about what to do, and have had to reinvent the wheel every time they’ve been approached by a community housing group. Some projects have been delayed for years. Others have been consigned to the filing cabinet, never to see the light of day.

“For the first time in one place the toolkit brings together a comprehensive suite of all the specialist documentation and advice they will need. We’re confident the toolkit will give local authorities the confidence and insights they need to engage with community-led housing projects.”

The toolkit includes examples of other community-led housing schemes, funding tips and signposts to further information and support. While the transfer of buildings and land to a community group, whether by rent, lease or sale, has long been a strategic and operational priority for many local authorities, the means of achieving this have not been available before in a central, comprehensive or co-ordinated way.

Jon Lee, Business Development Manager at Ecology explained why we supported the toolkit,   “We’re an experienced provider of mortgages for community-led housing groups and their members and we are delighted to support the development of this new toolkit, which we hope will make it easier for local authorities in particular to support people powered housing solutions.”

Ecology joined in sector discussions, two years ago, which were led by Jon Fitzmaurice of Self Help Housing and HACT, following the end of the empty homes community grants programme. We called for resources to help local authorities and community housing groups work more effectively together.

Pete Duncan, Director of Social Regeneration Consultants was the lead author of the resulting toolkit, bringing together expertise from across the sector including Anthony Collins Solicitors who provided extensive legal content.

Find out more about the toolkit here.

Find out more about our support for community-led housing.

London Community Land Trust St Clements development
London Community Land Trust St Clements development
Lancaster cohousing development
Lancaster cohousing development