Network briefing – What a change: the conversion of non-residential buildings into homes

It’s such an obvious way of creating new housing that it’s amazing nobody took more advantage of it sooner. In addition to building homes (and virtually everyone agrees the UK is not building enough), why not create more housing from bricks and mortar that already exist?

26 January 2017 PDF (514kB)
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Network briefing – What a change: the conversion of non-residential buildings into homes

It’s such an obvious way of creating new housing that it’s amazing nobody took more advantage of it sooner. In addition to building homes (and virtually everyone agrees the UK is not building enough), why not create more housing from bricks and mortar that already exist?

The conversion of non-residential buildings has been used by housing providers to add to their stock for years. However, thanks in part to simplified planning laws introduced four years ago, the number of new homes resulting from projects of this type is on the increase.

Of course, not every office block, factory or pub is suitable as a house or apartment. But housing providers undertaking such ventures report that, where an existing property lends itself to being houses or flats, conversions can often be carried out reasonably fast and generally at less cost than building from scratch.

Read on to discover more on how housing associations are undertaking such conversions.

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