Investment in Cooperative Homes for Local People in the East Midlands
East Midlands Homes Cooperative (EMHC) has received an investment of £120,000 from Resonance’s Affordable Homes Rental Fund (AHRF) to buy a property in Nottingham.
The Affordable Homes Rental Fund was established by Resonance in 2012 to invest in affordable housing projects nationwide to help those in low income areas to rent homes on an affordable and secure basis. The Fund has worked with the East Midlands Homes Cooperative to deliver much needed three bed supported accommodation in an area where it is increasingly difficult for local people to remain in their communities due to the high cost of housing.
East Midlands Homes began in 2010 as four of the current members initially started working together as volunteers. The Cooperative was formally established in 2013 to provide decent rental accommodation to disadvantaged families, BME and other groups with similar needs principally within the Nottingham area. East Midlands Homes now has 327 members throughout the UK, 46 of whom are active volunteers and 11 who are tenants in the properties managed by the Cooperative.
Within their communities in Nottinghamshire, as in other parts of the country there are significantly disadvantaged families and individuals on low incomes who struggle to afford housing. Members of the EMHC pool their skills in repair and refurbishment to help keep the costs of the work as low as possible and revitalize dilapidated houses in the community. Using this method, the homes can then be rented affordably and help the community bring sustainable change to their local area.
The members of the Cooperative include a consortium of qualified builders, plumbers, electricians and other skilled labourers who volunteer their time to work on the refurbishments and maintain tenanted properties. So far, the Cooperative has successfully refurbished eleven homes of which two are owned by the Cooperative and nine are managed on behalf of landlords. Now the group is keen to build on their own portfolio.
The £120,000 loan from the Fund has allowed them to source an empty property in Nottingham to convert to a supported shared home, to be rented to ex–offenders within Nottinghamshire communities and enable them to rebuild their lives.
Osmond Okungbowa, the operations manager and a founding member at the Cooperative says: the loan has enabled us to provide a decent shared affordable rental home for the young ex- offenders within our local community to rebuild their lives and reintegrate into their communities “
John Williams, Head of Property Funds at Resonance said: “It is great to see another investment from our Affordable Homes Rental Fund and the first to a community organisation in the East Midlands region. This shows that there are amazing community groups across the country that are willing to give time, labour and indeed their own money, to get their plans off the ground. Our impact investment fund helps provide the much needed investment with loan terms that make sense for a group offering affordable rents. We would like to hear from more community organizations that would like investment to get their plans off the drawing board.”
Community organisations interested in a loan from the fund should contact Anne Woolhouse at Resonance on firstname.lastname@example.org