The Launch of the Dr and Mrs J. Steven Faulds Memorial Fund
On the 14th of September 2018, at the The Highlands Small Communities Housing Trust’s Conference Event and AGM, Drew Hendy MP announced the launch of the Dr and Mrs J. Steven Faulds Memorial Fund.
After launching the new fund, Drew Hendry said:
"I was delighted to join the team at HSCHT to announce this new fund which offers families the opportunity of financial support to build their very own rural home. It’s such a lovely way for Dr and Mrs Faulds family and friends to honour the couple’s longstanding commitment to rural housing."
“This fund wont only secure a better future for families who may have otherwise struggled to own their own home, it will also help ensure the vibrancy of some of our most remote communities - a truly wonderful legacy for the Faulds to leave.”
But What Exactly is the Dr and Mrs J. Steven Faulds Memorial Fund?
The family and friends of Dr J. Steven and Mrs May Faulds have created a fund in their memory to help individuals and families access affordable self-build housing plots across rural Scotland. The fund will help those who are eligible to purchase a plot of land so they can build their own home.
This comes at a time when it is becoming increasingly difficult to access high street self-build finance and people often find themselves stuck in the vicious cycle of paying expensive rent and being unable to save for their own home which creates strain on the affordable housing sector.
A supporter of the fund explained that the Faulds had strong family links to the West Coast particularly Mull and Skye and a keen interest in the rural economy specifically the need for good quality affordable housing in rural areas. They went on to say that, “The fund is a way to remember them and continue the work they started in an area they were very attached to. We chose the Highlands Small Communities Housing Trust to administer the fund due to their extensive experience and success in providing affordable housing and hope that other benefactors might follow our example when they see what it is achieving”.
A representative from HSCHT explained, “We are delighted to be working with the Faulds fund which is providing an innovative way to tackle a very real problem facing rural communities. It is often impossible for families to get support from a bank or building society to buy a building plot. This fund will provide the seed funding many families need to kick start their dream of owning their own home in their community”
Example of a HSCHT Self-build Development in Beauly, Scottish Highlands
How does the Fund work?
The Highlands Small Communities Housing Trust (HSCHT) is administering the fund.
HSCHT will work with communities to identify suitable land to purchase, provide the necessary infrastructure, divide it into self-build plots, and then sell them to an individual or family for self-build purposes. If successful, the applicant will be able to purchase a discounted plot of land with full title on a shared-equity basis with a Rural Housing Burden and right of pre-emption attached.
(Visit http://www.hscht.co.uk/rural-housing-burden1.html to read more about the Rural Housing Burden).
Projects will be undertaken to an agreed programme at the end of which loans will be repaid to the fund. This will allow HSCHT to use the fund again and again to help new communities.
Before fully applying, applicants must discuss the desire to build a home with an independent mortgage advisor. This is to ensure that they can secure a mortgage provider for a completed project that was self-built.
Who is Eligible to Apply?
- A permanent connection to the local community i.e. family or personal connection, employment
- They have experienced difficulties in securing housing opportunities that meet the accommodation needs of their household
- They are able to meet the costs of developing the plot; and
- They have a clear understanding of the nature and limitations of the Rural Housing Burden
- Applicants to the fund will be prioritised in the following order:
- Scottish Island Applications
- Applicants from a remote rural location with a population of less than 500 people
- Applicants from an accessible rural location with a population of less than 500 people
- * Applicants in social rented housing, insecure tenancies or unsuitable housing
A register of interest will be held by HSCHT, who will be in touch with applicants if a house plot becomes available for them in their preferred location.
How to Apply to the Fund
To apply for the Dr & Mrs J. Steven Faulds Memorial Fund contact The Highlands Small Communities Housing Trust.
T: 01463 233 548.