Introduction

In the context of the SHICC Interreg project (1), the FMDV (Fonds Mondial de Développement des Villes – Worldwide Fund for Development of Cities) is conducting a feasibility study for an investment platform to finance Community Land Trust (CLT) projects. Hefboom, a founding member of FEBEA, is charged with this assignment.

The scope of the project is the North West region of Europe, including Spain, Italy and Switzerland. In order to finance CLT projects, a thorough insight is needed on the demand and supply side for CLTs.  The demand side quantifies the number of projects, the number of housing units in a project and the investment volume needed to finance these projects.  On the other hand, the supply side insight is needed on the availability of financial resources willing to invest in these projects.

This is a €3m European Interreg programme, carried out over a three-year period (2017-2020) by the City of Lille (France); the National CLT Network (UK); the CLT of London, Brussels and Ghent (Belgium) and FMDV (France).

What is a CLT project?
Community Land Trusts (CLT) can be defined as local not-for-profit organisations which develop and manage affordable housing (explained below) and urban facilities in perpetuity. In practice, the CLT withdraw land from speculative markets, keeping it in a trust. In this way, they help control property prices and preserve access to housing for low-income households. They have thus been internationally recognised as legitimate participatory and anti-speculative models that strengthen social cohesion. 

The CLT project realises housing units for households that can rent or can buy those units. A mix of both is also feasible.

What is affordable housing?
For target audiences with low-income basis or even with an income that is nearly too low to acquire regular financing on the market have difficulties acquiring good quality housing.  Housing units that are designed and constructed to be acquired by these audiences are "affordable houses".  Consequently, the CLT scope of audiences is larger than only the lowest incomes of the population.

Why this questionnaire? 
To quantify the supply side for CLT projects, Hefboom is looking for information about the available financial resources and we would very much like to address specific questions to you that help to acquire insight on the availability of these financial resources.  Because this study is on a European wide base, Hefboom is very grateful for the input of FEBEA members and stakeholders.

Involvement of the European Investment Bank (EIB)
Hefboom received the assignment from FMDV to participate in this feasibility study.  Additionally, the EIB is advising FMDV, SHICC and Hefboom based on their experience in financing large, European wide projects, evaluating the possibility of setting up a dedicated investment platform at the European level.  In this respect contacts between Hefboom and EIB are on a regular basis.  If the investment platform is considered feasible, there could be financing opportunities for the interested partners, including FEBEA members.

[1] SHICC stands for Sustainable Housing for Inclusive and Cohesive Cities. The SHICC aims to develop, support and disseminate the CLT and OFS model in Europe. The SHICC programme is structured around three main themes: Firstly, recognition of the legit

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* 1. Can we have your coordinates? We will not use your contact information for anything else but to keep you informed on the study. We will not provide your contact data to other entities without your explicit consent. 

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* 2. Your Experiences in financing housing projects

Does your organisation have experience with the financing of real estate development projects like CLTs or other social housing or affordable housing projects?

Note: from here on we will use the term “social housing” to indicate all these types of projects)

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* 3. What are the barriers to finance social housing projects for your organisation?

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* 4. Can you indicate which organisations in your market finance such social housing projects? Do you know why they chose to finance such (a) project(s)?

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* 5. Can you briefly describe the social housing project(s) that your organisation has financed or is financing? (you can skip this question if you replied no to question 1).

Please indicate the main characteristics on which you can differentiate the projects:
- type of project (houses, apartments, studios...)
- private or public project
- who initiated the project (public or private entity, group or individual org...),
- top-down or bottom-up initiative
- private housing only or communal spaces included ...

If weblinks or documents are available, can you please add them here?

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* 6. Understanding the financing structure
Did your organization finance did your organisation co-finance or did you finance particular parts of the project (if so, specify which phase: land purchase, project development, construction/building phase)?

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* 7. In the case of co-financing: can you describe the partners for the financing of the housing project?

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* 8. Can you describe the funding mix of the building project (Loan, equity, venture capital… own resources)  with an indication of the approximate % of total funding for each? 

Can you also indicate the time horizon for the specific funding types (n° years) if not for the full period?

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* 9. What are your experiences in general with the financing of social building projects?

Did you experience difficulties in the setup of the funding of the projects? If yes, can you explain?

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* 10. Would your organisation be willing to finance similar social housing projects in the future? (multiple answers possible)

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* 11. Understanding the credit analysis decisions

What information does your organisation require to  start the assessment of financing request for such projects?

In general, how do you evaluate the risk factors in a project up for financing? What are your metrics to evaluate the risk?

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* 12. What information do you need from the initiators of a social housing project?

To clarify: this is the level of information that you require in order to start the ANALYSIS of the dossier (regardless of the result of your decision). The information listed here is needed to initiate your analysis, not to base your (positive or negative) decision on yet.

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* 13. What information do you need about the social housing project?

To clarify: this is the level of information that you require in order to start the ANALYSIS of the dossier (regardless of the result of your decision). The information listed here is needed to initiate your analysis, not to base your (positive or negative) decision on yet:

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* 14. What type of financial information do you need?

To clarify: this is the level of information that you require in order to start the ANALYSIS of the dossier (regardless of the result of your decision). How much detail do you require?

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* 15. If the feasibility study regarding the CLT/housing projects would prove successful, can we contact you for possible financing opportunities at national/European level?

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