A group of families interested in building sustainable and genuine affordable rented homes.
Emerging project to build affordable housing following the Neighbourhood Plan
Zahra are a fully mutual housing co-op looking to build affordable homes suitable for multi-generational living. Several generations living together can bring many social benefits including help with childcare as well as health and wellbeing benefits for older relatives.
As private renters, they have found most rented properties on the market unsuitable for larger families and are also looking for stability and security of tenure. The homes will be for long term submarket rent and their affordability will be protected in perpetuity by the cooperative structure. The co-op will be responsible for the construction, maintenance, finance and security of the homes.
How we’re helping
Zahra attended several workshops held by Harrow Council in 2017, registered the co-op and received a small grant from the council to explore community led housing on small sites in the borough. We have been working closely since Autumn 2018 to clarify options and their implications and helping Zahra commission financial modelling and capacity studies on potential sites.
- Zahra’s blog for Power to Change on intergenerational living Read here
LOLC are seeking to set up a mutually supportive mixed-tenure cohousing project in north-east London to Lifetime Homes standards, future proofing the homes for their changing needs. Older LGBT people are more likely to be single, live alone and rely on external services due to lack of informal support. The culture of sheltered homes can be isolating and LOLC intend to create an inclusive and safe space, contributing to innovative approaches to aging.
The group are looking to work in partnership with a Registered Provider or developer. Their goal is to build approximately 25-30% affordably rented accommodation, with the remainder available under the Older People’s Shared Ownership scheme or bought outright.
Co-founders Jude Watson and Susan Chambers met to research and develop the idea before holding their first public meeting in April 2016. There are currently 19 members, who pay a £10 monthly contribution for travel, printing and room hire costs. LOLC are a Company Limited by Guarantee in which all full members are directors with voting rights. New members go through a process of joining before becoming a full member. Decisions are made by consensus and the roles of Chair and Secretary are rotated, while the Treasurer is a fixed role.
How we’re helping
LOLC attended our launch event in 2017 where they met housing associations, social investors and architects, who have been giving them informal advice since. They received funding from Locality to commission a business plan and are currently working with Maria Brenton, one of our CLH Advisers. They are exploring potential partners and writing a brief for a project coordinator with experience in development to help identify potential sites and build relationships with partners.
Arcadia are looking to build affordable, inter-generational housing in East London. As a group, they have visited other community led housing projects and attended various workshops to establish their vision and values.
They hope to have shared spaces such as a kitchen and garden where residents can socialise, in addition to their own personal living space. They are looking to incorporate including provision for the elderly and/or disabled in their scheme, and work on bringing the wider community in, living out the Christian principle “love your neighbour as yourself”.
They are looking to build 5-10 submarket leasehold homes. It is anticipated individual leases will have a resale price covenant imposed through a sec 106, to protect any affordability in the homes in perpetuity.
How we’re helping
We have supported Arcadia to incorporate as a Community Interest Company, define their objects and open a bank account. We are funding them to commission financial feasibility modelling and our advisers are working with them to secure sites they are actively looking at in East London.
- Learn more about Arcadia’s vision and values on their website