Some good news: Social Housing stories to make you smile

Posted on 26 May 2022
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Some good news: Social Housing stories to make you smile

While the private sales and lettings markets have a habit of hogging the headlines, good news in the social housing sector doesn’t get the column inches it deserves. The Viewber team is pleased to hear about hand-overs and new initiatives pioneered by housing associations. Here are four stories to bring balance to your daily property reading.

Call the Midwife in Cornwall

Although Jenny Agutter is most used to delivering on-screen babies in her role as a medically-trained nun in Call the Midwife, the actress proudly oversaw the delivery of six new homes in Cornwall.

Local resident Jenny was present as six new, low cost rented homes were launched by the Grade Ruan Community Land Trust together with Cornwall Community Land Trust (CCLT). The houses will remain affordable in perpetuity and are only available to people with a local connection. Fittingly, the first resident to move in was an NHS worker.

Commitment to construction

While the Government has fallen short of its target to build 300,000 new homes a year – a failure that’s led to Levelling Up secretary Michael Gove to effectively scrap the ambitious annual target – another group is taking up the mantle.

Make Modular is a newly formed trade body representing builders using the modern method of construction (MMC). Together, this construction group says it can build more than 15,000 homes a year by 2024, with Social Housing the main beneficiary.

Dream team accelerates progress

A fantastic case use of MMC can be seen in Wiltshire, where the local council has taken a collaborative approach to delivering new affordable homes. The authority is working with SWPA – an alliance that brings buyers and suppliers together to build, refurbish and maintain social housing for better communities – to deliver 100 new council houses every year for the next ten years.

The first 19 sustainable homes, five of which will be wheelchair-accessible bungalows, will be created using MMC, transported and completed on three pilot sites to address a local social housing shortage.

Greener and cheaper social housing

While the Government may have missed its housebuilding target, it is making sure that existing stock is retrospectively improved. Socially rented housing is set to become warmer, cheaper and greener thanks to the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund. This new initiative represents £160 million open to local authorities and housing associations across England, with the specific intention of improving energy efficiency.

The first wave of funding will concentrate on the UK’s worst performing social housing. The improvements will deliver a saving of around £170 per year on energy bills and will reduce each property’s carbon footprint.

If you are working for a local authority, housing association or charity, Viewber can support your property management programme and ambitions. With 24/7 nationwide coverage, you can book a locally based Viewber to accompany tenants, file property inspections, chaperone trade contractors and produce property listing packs (photos, videos and floorplans) anywhere in the country. Get in touch to set up a discovery call.

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