Grants to build affordable homes
We are all familiar with the consequences of a lack of affordable housing, particularly on lower income families.
It results in people having to move out of the community leaving support networks behind, a lack of children in our rural schools, local services being starved of local employees and customers and many more.
The list of issues is long.
The National Park Authority cannot resolve it alone and we need you, the local community, to join with us to make a difference.
- Have you heard that the South Downs National Park Authority has grants available to build more affordable housing?
The scheme, using money paid by developers who are building new homes within the National Park, gives grants of between £10,000 and £30,000 per affordable home!
- Where can this money be used?
The grant is available to help fund the building of affordable homes on rural exceptions sites (sites that would not be granted planning permission for open market housing) or through community-led initiatives such as Community Land Trusts.
The money is targeted at these affordable homes as they remain affordable in perpetuity. The grant is not available to affordable homes that will not remain so.
- Who can apply for this grant?
- Groups involved in community led housing initiatives
- Parish Councils
- Housing Associations
- Let’s make this happen – here are the steps you need to take
For most areas, much of the following work has already been done. If this is the case – there is no need to start all over again. Pull together what you already have and come and talk to us. However, if you are at the start, here is what you need to do:
1. Prove there is a need for affordable housing.
You may know of local people in need of affordable homes but anecdotal evidence isn’t enough. You’ll need to carry out a housing need survey or work with an organisation such as Action in Rural Sussex (for East and West Sussex), HARAH – Hampshire Alliance for Rural Affordable Housing (for Hampshire). In addition, your Local District or Borough Council may offer help and support e.g. Chichester District Council Community Led Housing.
2. Start looking for potential sites.
Work with the parish, community and local landowners to identify several possible sites. But don’t spend any money on land or designs yet! Start conversations with us, the National Park Authority, we can guide you through site selection and help you identify sites that won’t damage the landscape, local wildlife etc. and are therefore more likely to get planning permission – avoiding disappointment and wasted money later down the road. We will prioritise pre-application discussions on sites such as this and we will offer this service for free for those sites with real potential.
3. Consider how this housing is going to be delivered.
What are the aspirations and views of the land-owner? What are the views of the community? There are a number of ways to deliver sites including through a Community Land trust and a Housing Association. There are advantages and disadvantages associated with each.
Got a scheme in mind or just curious and starting to think about it? Contact us on 01730 819215 and speak to someone in the Major Projects Team.
If your community would like to know more about our grant scheme contact firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have gone through our step by step approach, now apply for a grant Affordable Housing Grant Application Form