For affordable housing providers

Making it easy for affordable housing providers to partner with community led housing groups and organisations. For housing associations, local authority housebuilders and arms-length management organisations.
If you would like to initiate or develop a CLH scheme, we can help you to find a community partner and to facilitate successful partnership working, or to build a new community group from scratch to take on a stewardship role within your scheme. Our Community Building service will help you to build communities, not just homes.

Why get involved in community led housing?

Beyond some of the benefits of community led housing that we describe here, there a variety of reasons why housing associations and local authorities get involved, which are often dependent on the context. Get in touch to talk to us about what might be in it for your organisation.

Values

  • Ethics and impact
  • Regulatory responsibilities & social housing white paper
  • Permanent Affordability
  • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
  • Placemaking

Effective delivery

  • Partnership and reputation building with communities, local & national government.
  • Reporting CLH delivery in strategic partnerships with Homes England
  • Community engagement, support & local power
  • Planning permission

Additionality

  • Local intelligence & responding to community needs & aspirations
  • Access to land and empty buildings
  • Access to grant funding
  • Testing new products

Outcomes

  • Lower voids, rent arrears and management costs
  • Good housing management, reduced complaints and ASB

There are lots of examples of affordable housing providers getting involved in community led housing and partnership models can take all sorts of shapes and sizes. This practical guide to partnerships between housing associations and community led housing organisationsis a good place to start. Please get in touchif you would like to learn more and we would be happy to talk in more detail about what might be possible.

How we can help

Different projects and partners will have different needs, but broadly our Community Building service can help with:

Concept development Visioning for your CLH project, starting with your ideas and objectives. Developing a brief and a plan.
Community recruitment Community engagement to identify and work with founder members of the community group.
Community building Working with residents and any wider members of the community group before and after occupancy, to enable them to influence design and living as they choose, within the scope of the project. Delivering training and capacity building to enable them to do this.
Community governance Supporting community groups to formalise their governance structures, develop constitutions and incorporate. Ensuring that they are set up and managed for success and sustainability.
Planning Help in ensuring local community support for a CLH scheme and negotiating and securing planning permission for CLH elements of new developments (e.g. section 106), if you need it.
Legal structure and agreements Help to prepare and negotiate partnership agreements, leases and management agreements between CLH organisations and partners.
Lettings and nominations Developing agreements with local authorities and practical steps to balance housing need with other needs identified by local residents and communities, facilitating cooperation in Local Lettings Plans.
Partnership facilitation Acting as an intermediary and translator between the community and the developer partner, to help them effectively work together. This can include assistance at project team and decision making meetings, supporting all partners to input into the development of briefs and plans.
Training Training and development for partners to increase team awareness of what CLH means, the benefits for the homes and communities they are building and what it means for your organisation. Building culture, understanding of and increasing skills in working with communities over the long term.

 

Why work with us?

  • We are a specialist community led housing support organisation. Bringing more community led housing schemes forward is our reason for being and we want to work with others who share our values.
  • Our advisers are trained through a nationally accredited programme for community led housing advisers. They straddle communities and housing in terms of their background and experience – they can be a talk both languages, be a translator, help to de-risk the process of working together, navigate tensions between community governance, design and deliverability. ​
  • We can work alongside your own staff and provide training if needed, offering the expertise and experience of community led housing projects that brings housing development and community development together.
  • We are well connected and work collaboratively with a range of stakeholders across the region, so we can help to build support for your scheme.
  • We are independent, so we can really listen to your needs and work freely to find the best solution for you.
  • We are part of a national network of hubs like us, with access to ideas, experiences and insights from across the country.
  • Ultimately, we are building a community of practice where like-minded organisations can come together and learn from one another. So by working with us you’ll be part of something bigger too. We encourage everyone who shares our values and would like to see a new wave of community led housing in the West Midlands to become a member of wMUCH.