What Is The Difference Between Affordable Housing and Social Housing?

What's the difference between affordable housing and social housing

Today Amy looks at the difference between affordable housing and social housing and more specifically at how landlords can team up with charities, local authorities and other external agencies to mitigate the risks involved in housing vulnerable tenants while still turning a profit investing in social property.


Social Property With Amy Varle


Affordable Housing And Social Property

Today we’re going to look at affordable housing and social property.

So, social property investment is a relatively new investment strategy where the idea is to open up local housing allowance to more people and make it more effective and efficient for private landlords in the affordable housing market.

Social property investment aims to use the strengths, talents and resources of the public, private and third sectors, so that you, as a private investor, can access more help and support with the operational management of your properties particularly in instances where you are housing vulnerable tenants.

Linking Up With Third Parties

As a social property landlord, you might be able to link up with your local authority, or with a local charity, a non-profit or a voluntary group. You may be able to create a support agreement so that everyone is taking some responsibility for aspects of the service that are being provided.

It may be that as a landlord you become responsible only for letting the property and keeping it in a good condition. In other words, you might only be responsible for the building and making sure that it meets the needs of the tenant.

In this instance, the care of the tenant could fall down to an external agency, such as non-profit charity. Such an agency could assist the tenant in making sure that their tenancy is successful.

For some tenants, such an arrangement can be very beneficial and far better for everyone than an arrangement where the tenant and the landlord are left to work things out on their own.

The Three Key Areas Of Social Property Investment

With social property investment, we tend to focus on three key areas. These are for the investor, for the partner agencies that the investor will be working with, and for the tenants as well.

Maximising Profit

The first thing we look at is profitability.

Of course, with every project, it is important to maximise the potential for profit and make it as cost effective as possible while making sure that it still works for all parties involved.

The house needs to be affordable for the tenant but it’s also an investment and needs to be financially attractive to the landlord as well.

Examining Risk

The second thing we look at is the element of risk.

So, here, we are trying to:

  1. Reduce and mitigate the risks involved
  2. Make sure that any risks are shared fairly

What we don’t want, is for the landlord to be taking all the responsibility for the project and ultimately being the one who is taking all the risks.

So, we look to reduce risk across the board by working strategically.

By bringing in the help of partner agencies such as nonprofits, voluntary groups, local authorities and housing associations, risk can be spread and mitigated.

There are lots of different partners that can be brought into a project to support a landlord with a project. That way landlords can feel confident and supported when they are investing in social property.

Making a Difference

The third area we look at is the difference we are making to peoples’ lives.

Ultimately, with social property investment, we are trying to make the society a little bit better.

I believe that this can happen with the right combination of risk mitigation and reduction while being accepting of the fact that what we are dealing with is housing as a commodity that needs to profitable for investors.

With the right blend of all of the above, we can make a difference to the lives of the people we can house. And this, I’m happy to say, has been evidenced by the results we have seen so far.


You can read more about Amy Varle’s journey in property by clicking here.


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