Affordable housing can save rural services and communities

 

Ark welcomes a recent report by the National Housing Federation which highlights how investment in affordable housing can save rural services and local communities.

The report shows a growing trend of key pillars of community life (pubs, post offices and schools) being closed in the last five years, but highlights case studies where the intervention of Housing Associations has kept these much-needed services open.

Over 3,000 rural homes were built last year, and work has started on 3.700 more, however more than 40,000 new homes are needed each year to keep up with demand.

One in five households in England live in rural areas and on average these are less affordable than urban areas, In 2016, the cheapest homes in rural areas were 8.3 times the income of typical first-time buyers.

Chris Seeley, Director said

“Continued investment in the delivery of affordable housing is essential to ensure the sustainability of rural communities.

“This report highlights the need to provide affordable homes to ensure families and young people continue to settle, work and grow in rural communities and the impact this has on vital community services.

“Ark has pledged our support to the Rural Housing 5 star plan and we look forward to working with the National Housing Federation, its wider stakeholders and our partners to deliver the ambition of rural housing associations. By working together, we can not only deliver more affordable homes, but a sustainable future for rural communities”.

For more information, see the National Housing Federation website – http://www.housing.org.uk/topics/investing-in-communities/rural-housing/affordable-housing-saving-rural-services/