The government has made £8.5 million in funding available as part of a three-year project to help communities deliver discounted homes.
The funding is available to volunteer groups for locally-led neighbourhood plans to provide discounted homes for younger people and families in need of housing.
These are defined as properties built for people to buy at affordable rates, aimed at enabling them to secure mortgages in areas of the country where they are currently locked out of the market by high prices. The example given is a three-bed home from the Cornwall Community Land Trust, which was recently sold at a discount for local people, for a price of £160,000, compared to an average property price in the county of over £230,000.
The £8.5m is on top of last year’s government announced support package of £26 million for communities seeking to prepare and adopt a neighbourhood plan.
Volunteer groups can apply now for between £10,000 and £50,000 of the new funding to help identify suitable sites for discounted homes, get planning permission and to provide other technical support. Further free specialist advice and guidance will also be made available for those who participate in the pilot.
The new funds can be applied for via the third-party support provider Locality. The pilot project will run from 13 May 2019 to 31 March 2022. The government will then review the outcomes in January 2020 to inform arrangements for future years.
Minister of State for Housing, Kit Malthouse MP, said:
“Supporting volunteers who are passionate about building more of the homes we need in their communities is something I’m fully behind, and I want to see far more people getting involved across England.
“This funding is on top of the £26 million already available to help get neighbourhood plans over the line, which act as powerful tools for communities to be involved in the planning of their local area – providing different housing types for those who need new homes.”
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