There are a number of funding opportunities available to developers and businesses looking to invest in the borough, from both national and regional funding schemes. This section aims to provide an up to date snapshot of the schemes that are currently available.
Business Growth Programme
The Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP is delighted to announce the launch of a £33m package of support for local businesses. The Business Growth Programme (BGP), managed by Birmingham City Council’s Business Development & Innovation Team and part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund, will offer a comprehensive package of business support to businesses that work solely with other businesses (B2B), and are Small to Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs) based in the Greater Birmingham & Solihull, Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire, and The Marches LEP areas. Funding is subject to availability and eligibility criteria, details of which can be found by visiting www.birmingham.gov.uk/bgp. For further information contact Kelly Kerr-Delworth, Business Relations Officer at ESBC on 01283 508625.
Starter Homes: Unlocking the Land Fund
The aim of the £1.2 billion Starter Home Land Fund is to support the acquisition, remediation and de-risking of suitable land for start hom developments that can then be built out by developers. The Fund will operate over the next three financial years, to ensure construction of starter homes is happening from 2018 onwards. Receipts from the subsequent sale of remeidated land to private developers will then be used to support the delivery of more starter homes later in the Spending Review period. The majority of the Fund will be managed by the Homes and Communities Agency where they will be seeking opportunities to acquire, remediate and de-risk suitable sites across the country outside London. This prospectus specifically invited expressions of interest from local authorities outside of London to form partnerships with the HCA to use the Fund.
Large Sites Infrastructure Programme
In April 2014 the Large Sites Infrastructure Programme was launched to help accelerate and unlock housing developments of at least 1500 housing units that have slowed down or stalled completely. The programme was designed to create a sustainable pipeline of locally-led large scale sites coming through the development process to delivery to provide a medium to long term boost to housing growth. Funding is being made available on the basis that it is recoverable. There is a minimum investment of £500,000 and it must be on a site with capacity for 1500 housing units.
Bidding is open on a continuous basis until the fund has been allocated. Bids will be assessed and prioritised against the criteria set out in the prospectus and where applicable will be allocated to the shorlist. The intention is to run Continuous Market Engagement to the end of March 2020 to allow schemes to come forward for support at the point that it is needed and enable a robust and well informed picture of locally-led large scale development activity to be established. The Large Sites Infrastructure Programme Prospectus sets out what support is available.
Custom Build Serviced Plots Loan Fund
The £150million Custom Build Serviced Plots Loan Fund has been designed to to fund the development of serviced plots to support the growing number of people who want to custom build their own home. Funding will be available on the basis of a fully recoverable loan. The fund will only be payable to non public-sector recipients. The fund will provide loan finance to bring forward sites of 5 or more serviced plots. Access is provided and each plot or parcel has utilities/services provided to the plot/parcel boundary. Following consultation of the initial bidding round in 2014 access to the fund will be through continuous market engagement process until the fund is fully allocated. The fund is intended to be open to applications from 2014/15 until 2019/2020. The total fund must be drawn down by 31 March 2020. The fund will be available in England only and will be managed by the Homes and Communities Agency.
Builders Finance Fund
The £525million Builders Finance Fund is designed to help restart and speed up housing developments between 5 and 250 units that have slowed down or stalled. Its main objective is to address difficulties in accessing development finance faced by some housebuilders, particularly smaller developers, and to help to bring forward stalled but viable sites. Funding is made available of the basis that it is recoverable. It will make investments over two years from 2015 to 2016 through to 2016 to 2017and will be operated as an open competition. There is a minimum investment of £200,000. Total funds must be drawn down by 31 March 2017.
Affordable Homes Programme 2015 to 2018
The 2015 to 2018 Affordable Homes Programme aims to increase the supply of new afforable homes in England by March 2018. Further to the Government's Spending Review announcement on 25 November 2015, bidding for the 2015 to 2018 Affordable Homes Programme has now closed. However, in order to maintain a pipeline of delivery in the lead up to to the new 2016 to 2021 Affordable Homes Programme, a process of continuous market engagement will continue to operate for shared ownership bids only. Nil grant Affordable Rent schemes will also be considered in the interim.
Affordable Home Ownership Schemes
Financial help through a government home ownership scheme may be available to people if they live in England and can't afford to buy a home. The three types of home ownership schemes are:
- Help to Buy: equity loans - open to both first-time buyers and home movers on new-build homes in England with a purchase price up to £600,000
- Help to Buy: mortgage guarantees - mortgage guarantees help people buy a home with a deposit of 5% of the purchase price. It's open to both first-time buyers and movers for new-build and older homes in the UK with a purchase price up to £600,000.
- Shared ownership schemes - shared ownership schemes are provided through housing associations. A person can buy a share of their home (25% to 75% of the home's value) and pay rent on the remaining share.
To keep up to date with programmes and initiatives which support developers and investors looking to bring forward brownfield sites for development, visit: