Sheffield Hallam University 

Funding at a glance

Programme: Backing Community-Led Housing
Approved: 2020
Timescale:  One year
Status: Funding complete

Sheffield Hallam University conducted a study exploring the speed of development of community-led housing projects.

Why we funded this project

This project added to the growing evidence in favour of sustainable funding for community-led housing.

Strategic purpose

This research supports the Backing Community-Led Housing programme as a way of increasing delivery of homes for people in need. It ensures better access to the information, support, advice and technical expertise that is needed to progress community-led housing schemes.

Project description

This study looked at the work of two community-led housing enabling hubs over the course of a year and considered development and build data for community groups that they supported.

Published in October 2021, Community-led Housing and the Speed of Development found that the timeliness of new affordable homes being delivered is often affected by similar factors, including:

  • Identifying land and getting planning permission
  • Securing funding and finance
  • Maintaining the support of local people
  • Ensuring the team behind development plans has good capacity
  • Gaining support from partners and policymakers

The report concluded that community-led housing compared favourably against private housebuilders regarding the speed of delivering new homes. Community-led housing developments take an average of six years from conception to completion, whilst private housebuilders take between 5.7 and 6.9 years.

This evidence of timely development was used to influence government and other stakeholders to fund community-led housing.

The Nationwide Foundation funded the Centre for Regional, Economic and Social Research at Sheffield Hallam University, as its independent learning partner. As part of its work to understand the impact and success of the Nationwide Foundation’s Decent Affordable Homes strategy, Sheffield Hallam undertook some deep dives into certain aspects. This included the Backing Community-Led Housing programme, and this report was undertaken to consider the speed of development of community-led housing projects.

Sheffield Hallam University

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