Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), which comprises the region’s 10 councils and Mayor, has agreed to invest £10m into two new funds to enable the provision of more specialist supported and affordable housing.
The cash from the Greater Manchester Housing Investment Loans Fund will deliver up to 100 homes over the next two years and the number will be increased with further investments in the future.
The £10m will be at least doubled through contributions from other investors and the funds will be managed by social impact investment company Resonance.
John Williams, investment director at Resonance, said: “We are delighted to have this commitment from Greater Manchester, it will mean that we can provide quality affordable specialist accommodation in the region. This commitment will also help us attract other socially minded investors.”
The first fund, the Resonance Supported Homes Fund, will be used to buy, refurbish and modify homes for people affected by learning disabilities, autism and neurodivergence, mental health needs, challenging behaviours and physical impairments, including those with sensory impairment.
Modifications could include wheelchair access, specialised bathrooms, bedrooms and kitchens, and space for carers and assistants. The properties will then be leased to charity partners.
The second fund will be used to buy, refurbish and adapt homes for people in priority need of social housing. The homes will be let through specialist housing providers, such as housing associations or supported housing providers, as well as private landlords who meet the standards of Greater Manchester’s Ethical Lettings Agency framework.
Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, said:
“People with learning disabilities such as autism and other disabilities often have a really tough time, living in accommodation that is not suitable for or tailored to their needs. We want Greater Manchester to be a place where everyone is supported to achieve their full potential. Investment like this will help provide the homes and support that people with learning disabilities deserve and that will help them to live happy and fulfilled lives.”
Paul Dennett, GMCA lead on housing and homelessness, added: “It is more important than ever now that we deliver on the ambitions articulated in Greater Manchester’s Housing Strategy because of the impact COVID-19 on the economy and the way people are affected by their housing situation.
“We must take this opportunity to make available the right type of housing. That means more affordable homes, more homes adapted for people’s health needs and more energy-efficient housing – as we continue to build a better and fairer city-region.”