Responsibility

Ignite invests for more affordable housing

We are helping reduce pressure on the UK’s housing market by creating more affordable housing through Ignite, the UK’s first corporate impact investment fund focused on energy and backed by Centrica

According to the National Housing Federation, it was estimated that 974,000 new houses were needed in the UK between 2011 and 2014. In reality however, fewer than 460,000 homes were built during this period.

To help tackle the chronic housing shortage in the UK, Ignite will invest £500,000 alongside our people’s expertise in 63000Homes Limited, a social enterprise that designs, manufactures and installs high quality, affordable modular homes at large volumes for the social housing market. This is Ignite’s latest investment which forms part of its commitment to grow the impact of social enterprises with innovative energy ideas by investing £10 million over 10 years.

While most developers focus on maximising land value, 63000Homes is selling houses only, at a fixed price per square foot, to local authorities and housing associations with their own plots of land.

The modular design is easy to install and allows flexibility to meet specific household needs - ranging from one to four bedroom homes. The design also meets the London Plan size standards and incorporates high levels of air quality and energy efficiency, ensuring homes not only support the wellbeing of tenants but reduces their carbon emissions too. The modular homes are manufactured entirely offsite, including fixtures and fittings for kitchens and bathrooms, and transported by lorry to the site. This process is much quicker than traditional construction, with tenants able to move into their new homes in less than a year from the start of the project.

With our investment of £500,000, 63000Homes will complete final design and engineering work on its pre-fabricated housing system and launch the first project of 12 units with a London Local Authority.

Ignite commented: “With the shortage of high quality, affordable housing, we were impressed with the innovative technical and commercial solutions that 63000Homes has designed, which provides low cost, near zero carbon homes.”

Discover more about Ignite’s investments or learn about Centrica’s collaborations that deliver positive impact in society.