LendInvest is putting the government on notice to improve access to finance for property SMEs.
Today we have launched a new report entitled Putting Finance First: the alternative route to funding Britain’s SME housebuilders, recognising that while the government is trying to help improve the outlook for property SMEs, not enough is being done to put rhetoric into action.
A year has passed since the release of our first report, Starting Small To Build More Homes: a blueprint for better policymaking for property SME market. Published in March 2017, the report brought together industry evidence for the first time to examine the root cause – and subsequent impact – of challenges faced by property SMEs. But what has changed?
While housing is now an ever more common topic for debate between politicians, these SMEs are still struggling to secure financial backing for their projects to increase housing supply.
There is clearly more work to be done.
In this report, we set out three proposed initiatives that combine existing government-backed funding mechanisms with the experience and expertise of alternative lenders, like LendInvest, to speed up and increase the supply of finance to property SME businesses:
- Homes England should deploy its £2.5 billion Home Building Fund through funding lines agreed with alternative lenders, like LendInvest
- Local authorities should co-invest with alternative lenders in local developments, utilising the Public Works Loan Board mechanism to provide discounted capital for SMEs
- The British Business Bank should appoint more alternative lenders to use the ENABLE Guarantee programme to underwrite property investment and development loans
The report includes important contributions from influential opinion formers around Westminster, Whitehall and industry:
- Mark Prisk MP (former Housing Minister and Member of the Communities and Local Government Select Committee)
- Brian Berry (CEO of the Federation of Master Builders)
- Jiři Król (Deputy CEO and Global Head of Government Affairs at the Alternative Credit Council)
- Nick King (former Special Adviser to Sajid Javid MP)