Funding Affordable Homes completes £23 million acquisition of two developments

7th December 2020

Funding Affordable Homes (FAH), a social impact company which invests in UK affordable housing, has completed the acquisition of two developments in the Isle of Wight and Rochdale for a combined £23 million.

The developments, which provide a total of 139 affordable homes, were forward funded by FAH, whose investment adviser is Edmond de Rothschild Real Estate Investment Management, and completed this month.

The development at Ryde on the Isle of Wight, which was carried out by Morgan Sindall Later Living, is a retirement community of 102 homes, comprising 75 extra care apartments and 27 bungalows. The extra care homes are a mix of 63 one-bed affordable rent and 12 two-bed shared ownership apartments. The bungalows are all two-bed shared ownership where residents can purchase between 25% and 75% of the equity of the property.

The concept and design detail were developed in partnership with the Isle of Wight Council and Southern Housing Group. Southern is the largest provider of affordable housing on the island and one of the larger registered providers in the UK, having extensive experience of managing such developments. Due to the quality of this partnership and strategic approach taken for the delivery of this scheme, FAH was able to attract substantial Homes England funding to aid deliverability and quality of the product.

The development at River Beal, Rochdale, provides 37 one-bed homes, which are all accessible, and three of which are built to full wheelchair accessible standards. It has the potential to accommodate a range of client groups including people with learning disabilities, physical disabilities as well as others with mental health conditions and dementia. The concept and design detail were developed in partnership with Rochdale Borough Council, Partners Foundation and Future Directions, the care provider.

Paul Munday, fund manager of FAH, said: “These developments facilitate the delivery of extra care and supported living housing for older people and vulnerable adults, providing significant social benefit by offering greater independence and dignity than institutional care. They combine excellent social delivery with an expected robust financial outcome.

James Whidborne, Head of Residential Fund Management UK at Edmond de Rothschild REIM, said: “Given the merits of the sector from both a social impact and returns perspective, our aspirations are to now grow FAH to in excess of £500 million within two years”.

FAH aims to promote the delivery of new affordable housing, while providing investors with long and secure income streams and capital appreciation. It has already acquired, or committed to acquire, around £170 million of socially beneficial housing projects in London, the east and south of England and other parts of the country. It typically provides forward funding to enable new properties to be built and managed by established Registered Providers of housing, but it also owns and utilises its own housing association, Funding Affordable Homes Housing Association.

Current investors include Big Society Capital, which improves the lives of people in the UK by connecting social investment to social enterprises and charities to create a greater social impact, and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, an independent Foundation, working to inspire social change through research, policy and practice.

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