Housing Finance Conference Insights

Posted on Thursday, March 22, 2018 by Elly HannaNo comments

Venn Group recently exhibited at the National Housing Federation’s ‘Housing Finance Conference 2018’. Attending as both exhibitors and delegates we enjoyed listening to talks from notable key speakers covering a range of topics including: the effects of deregulations on the housing market, understanding successful joint ventures from the private sector and looking at the influence of IT on the housing sector.

The insights we gained were:

  • The elimination of stamp duty for first time buyers, changes to planning systems in order to improve use of land in populated cities and towns, and a supplementary £15.3bn for house building over the next five years has had a positive impact in reaching the government’s goal to boost housing completions to 300,000 a year. However, the full extent of this success is still to be seen.

  • Allowing financial institutions like banks and hedge funds to partner with housing associations has generally been successful. Contrary to concerns over takeovers from the private sector - housing associations found that the private sector has been useful in:

    1. Finding sound areas to develop new homes.

    2. Encouraging the development of homes with rents that are below market rates.

    3. Exploring alternative lease options to increase housing supply of home with rents below market and without grants.

  • There have been positive results from the sector score card (an approved set of metrics for housing associations to showing value for money). Key findings of the report include:

    1. Between 80%-90% of tenants were satisfied with the overall service that they received from their housing provider.

    2. Notably housing associations have 99 out of 100 homes in occupation. 

  1. Adult-to-Adult relationships between employer and employee has been encouraged across the sector by:

    1. Replacing the outdated flextime arrangements with a malleable system that works for both managers and employees. This is facilitated through superior IT systems, new group-wide platforms and the accessibility of mobile devices and home working.

    2. Performance is measured by outcomes (productivity), rather than relying on people present at their desk all day. This needs to be accompanied by extra training and coaching for managers to encourage this new world thinking

    3. Wider use of enterprise social networks, to provide useful peer to peer communications and applauding the successes of peers to encourage innovation and hard work

In summary, we are pleased to find that despite the 1% rent reductions the housing sector has done extremely well to meet the rising demand for affordable housing. This has been through innovative partnerships with the private sector and by using technology in inventive ways to encourage greater customer satisfaction with employees and customers alike. We are looking forward to see how the sector advances and maneuvers its way to meet the ever increasing challenges in the market.

Thank you to everyone who visited our stand.

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