National Homelessness Property Fund 2 was created in response to the growing need for affordable housing, providing safe and decent homes for people in housing crisis, and launched in December 2020. Initially, the fund’s focus was on providing homes in the Greater Manchester region, where one in 81 people in Manchester is homeless, but the fund is now expanding into other regions across the UK including Liverpool City Region, Bristol, Oxford and Cornwall.

Aiming to purchase 800 family and one-bedroom homes - including via portfolios - across the UK, the fund has so far partnered with established impact-driven housing provider partners including Let Us, the ethical lettings agency in Greater Manchester that the fund launched with, and DHI, based in the south west. In line with its geographical expansion, the fund is continuing to gear up conversations with other local and national housing providers as potential partners.

The fund works by acquiring and refurbishing properties and leasing them to its housing partners to provide people at risk of homelessness with a settled home.

By partnering with regionally based housing providers, the fund not only provides local people facing housing crisis with a safe, decent and affordable home but also ensures they have access to the specialist support services they might need in order to help them sustain their tenancy and improve their circumstances. This includes access to support for addiction, mental and physical health issues, to find and re-engage with employment or education, to set down roots in the local community and to save for a deposit, so that they can eventually move into the private rented sector with a track record of maintaining a tenancy. It also means tenants are provided with the right homes and support for them in the areas within which they are already living or would like to move to.

And as a place-based social impact property fund, it is providing an opportunity for local authorities and pension funds - including Greater Manchester Pension Fund - to invest in local, affordable housing, in the geographical area of the UK within which they operate, enabling them to make regional social impact on local housing crises.

The fund launched with an initial investment of £20m and to date has raised £55m of its c£300m target fund size.