Is this the future for housing associations?

// HA News

Helena Partnerships, part of North West housing group Torus, have built a new '£75,000 house' that can be developed without the assistance of any grant funding.

The house is compliant with the code for sustainable homes Level 3 and cost £75,000 to design and construct, including all utilities and external works on land already owned by the housing association.

The build concept – Haus60 – designed specifically to address the challenges faced by many housing associations with regard to maximising available land and minimising costs, has been developed by the Paragon Construction Group. Though initially devised as a non-grant funded model, it was later part funded by the HCA.

Torus growth director, Steve Moore said “Like most housing associations we’re operating under considerable pressure. In the wake of Welfare Reform, there’s a growing demand for two bed homes, a general shortage of new affordable housing and a lack of available land to build on. To meet local need we needed to adapt and think more proactively about how we create new supply. Haus60 offered us a viable, affordable solution.”

Paragon Construction MD, Paul Barrow explains “We have been working in the affordable housing market for some years now and are acutely aware of the challenges housing associations operate under.”

“Haus60 is designed to offer social landlords a standardised, non-grant funded build that is fully scalable to meet individual needs and cost-effective too.”

Externally, the contemporary style home can blend sympathetically into existing neighbourhoods and established estates but internally embraces open plan living with large glazed windows and patio doors adding a sense of space and light.

Paul Barrow continues “Using Helena Partnerships as a case-study, we will be showcasing Haus60 at CIH Ideas Exchange on June 24th. Torus development director Bill Lacey has generously agreed to support us on the day and share his thoughts on the pilot scheme.”

“We’re inviting any interested housing associations or local authorities to come along and hear how we’ve helped other housing associations, with a view to understanding how we can help yours.”

Steve Moore adds “Since founding Torus in April this year, our commitment to creating new homes where they’re most needed is even greater. Investigating new delivery methods and embracing proactive opportunities – like Haus60 – will enable us to meet our goal to build 1,500 affordable new homes over the next five years.”

To find out more about Torus, visit or follow @WeAreTorus on Twitter.

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