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Sunday, December 17, 2017
Article written by Vincent Wilmot

Social Housing Finance for Housing the Poor?

The need for affordable housing for the relatively poor.

In many countries, including the UK and USA, acceptable housing cannot be afforded by lower-income families unless subsidised rent 'affordable housing' or 'social housing' is made available. Developers of new social housing face the financial problem of somehow subsidising their rents, as with housing grants or maybe using cheaper prefabricated housing.

Rent Subsidy Grants.

The USA and some other countries subsidise affordable housing only with rent subsidy grants, for which there may often be severe competition.

Housing Development Grants.

In other countries like the UK new social housing is subsidised chiefly by up front development grants. There the main grant funders now favour fewer bigger developers, and there is increasing grant bidding competition for such housing development grants.

Bidding for Housing Grants.

Affordable housing developers need successful bidding strategies for grant applications, and they often need to be appropriate to changing bidding situations. Needed new affordable housing or 'social housing' will generally only be developed if the developers, subsidy providers and all others involved are satisfied that a proposed new development project is financially viable and is good value for money as well as being for needed housing.

Demand for Social Housing.

Some areas of a country may get excessive demand for affordable housing while others get unsustainable low demand. This can happen when social rents are set way below low-market rents in some areas and close to low-market rents in other areas - especially when low-income families face relocation difficulty that prevents natural market corrections from working.

Social Exclusion in Social Housing.

Social housing development for the poor will tend towards concentrating unemployed, welfare dependant and problem families in a disadvantaged socially excluded sub-society. And this often involves housing problems for the landlord which can include non-sustainability needing appropriate social inclusion strategies.

Social housing developers will generally need some good financial calculation system for new project appraisal often an appropriate Excel calculator spreadsheet. And other calculator spreadsheets may have other uses, as to help show if prospective tenants can afford a particular property. These systems may be developed in-house, but can often be developed much more cheaply by a specialist.

Copyright 2006 Vincent Wilmot
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