If a housing scheme fits in with their local housing strategies, local authorities may also be able to provide some resources. This might be officer time. They rarely have financial resources available to support CCLH schemes, but some do.
How local authorities can help
They can use their strategic position in a variety of ways to enable schemes to be resourced:
- Those Councils that still own Council housing can use their borrowing powers to provide low cost loan facilities.
- Local authorities may have an influence over how Government housing grant and loan funding is used in their boroughs.
- In England, the £60 million Community Housing Fund for CCLH is currently being channelled through particular local authorities.
- In England, local authorities are the driving forces behind Combined Authorities which are intended to develop strategies to provide housing across the regions they serve. This includes developing systems for funding housing developments.
- Local authorities may facilitate the regeneration of particular areas or buildings, and within regeneration programmes, there may be opportunities to develop CCLH.
- Local authorities may be able to lease particular building assets to CCLH groups. Selling the freehold of property assets at sub-market prices to CCLH groups to make them viable and affordable may be complicated for a local authority because there are rules they have to follow about disposal of assets at best consideration. It may be possible, however, that the social value a CCLH scheme will bring can be taken into account. Alternatively, leasing may be a more straightforward option.