Innovative housing solutions: talk by Rebuild Southwest

image taken from Rebuild Southwest website

Who we are and what we do

Rebuild SW is “a unique CIC run primarily by Ex Service personnel working with a wide array of individuals to restore lives, rebuild properties, and directly work towards social improvement”.

The key challenges we face

Continued communication with influencing authorities.

There is a shortage of appropriate housing solutions.

There is a sizeable amount of disused housing stock and redundant buildings that could easily be brought back into use.

There is an urgent need for tangible and alternative training for a wide range of people who are unable to engage and thrive in mainstream education.

Our key policy recommendation(s) that we would like to see the citizens panel endorse

Council to be transparent about disused land for alternative housing solutions

Nationally, there are some very exciting and alternative housing schemes that are solving many of the same problems we face here in Cornwall.  The use of modular homes and container conversions could be the key to a number of our housing and homeless issues should they be given the opportunity to be trialled. The only thing holding Rebuild SW back is lack of suitable land on the outskirts of many of our towns.  CC own land in every town but seem to be hesitant with this information which could be key.

Housing associations to be transparent about empty homes they have in their housing stock and open to options to bring them back into use.

Sometimes housing associations abandon empty homes because the cost of ‘turning the properties around’ is too high. Rebuild South West has the manpower, energy and imagination to renovate abandoned properties at a cost far below what other builders put forward.  Local Social enterprises should be given the opportunity to take on the lease for some of these empty homes.

Rebuild Southwest to have its own housing list and own housing criteria

The model that Rebuild SW have trialled with a great deal of success is using the opportunity of a renovation to upskill and train a number of different groups, many of whom from ‘hard to reach’ situations.  In the event of RSW engaging with low priority participants, for renovation work they need to be offered the incentive of being allowed to occupy the property. Without this and with the conventional housing list stipulations in place, the model would not be fit for purpose.

For more information see Rebuild Southwest website

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