Co-operative housing could help turn "reluctant renters" into home owners, according to a report launched at Co-operative Congress.
Keith Edwards, Director of the Chartered Institute of Housing Cymru, launched Research Findings on the Potential Market for Housing Co-operatives in Wales, which he co-authored, at the Co-operative Housing fringe event of Congress.
The Welsh Co-operative Centre commissioned the research following the Welsh Government's decision to back co-housing as a way to build affordable homes. It was undertaken by the Chartered Institute of Housing and the Confederation of Co-operative Housing.
They found that “reluctant renters” – those priced out of the owner-occupied sector, but who do not need social housing – wanted a sense of ownership.
Mr Edwards said: “In the search for innovative solutions to meeting housing need, co-operative housing is particularly relevant. Wales has a long tradition of co-operation and a Government with a strong commitment to co-operative approaches. The housing crisis we face demands imaginative responses and co-operative housing is at the forefront of new thinking”
Nearly 300 people in Wales responded to the research, most of them reluctant renters. The findings highlight a low level of awareness of co-operative housing, but considerable interest in the co-operative approach among respondents who could not buy their own homes.
Most felt it important to have an equity stake in a development. However, affordability was considered more of a factor than equity.
Nic Bliss, Chair of the Confederation of Co-operative Housing, who chaired the Co-operative Housing fringe event, added: “Co-operative housing is often seen as a niche approach in the UK. Yet in other countries it offers affordable housing in places where mortgages are difficult to get, savings difficult to build up, or house prices too high.
“In Turkey, 25 per cent of the total housing stock is co-operative housing. In Sweden, it amounts to around 18 per cent of the total and in Germany co-operative rented housing makes up 10 per cent of the total rental housing stock, a massive 2.2 million homes. In the UK, the percentage of co-operative housing is just 0.6 per cent.”
In this article
- Affordable housing
- Chartered Institute of Housing
- Chartered Institute of Housing Cymru
- Co-operative Congress 2013
- Housing cooperative
- Keith Edwards
- Person Career
- Public housing
- Real estate
- Social Issues
- Social programs
- The Co-operative Group
- Welsh government
- United Kingdom