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What is a housing association?

Housing associations are private not-for-profit organisations which offer homes for people in need. In the UK there are over 1,500 housing associations.

Some housing associations specialise in providing homes for a particular group such as low income families, older people or those with disabilities.

Many associations are now offering homes for sale or for shared ownership to help people onto the property ladder, as well as market rent properties. This generates profit which is reinvested in building more homes and supporting communities. It also helps people in different circumstances find the right home for them.

Industry body the National Housing Federation says:
“Housing associations are united by a single purpose – to ensure everyone in the country can live in a quality home that they can afford.
“For over a hundred years we have delivered on this, whether that’s building low cost homes for Victorian workers or helping young families get on the housing ladder today. We meet shifting housing needs by building more homes, by providing extra support when it’s needed and by innovating to tackle the challenges people face.
“In changing times, we deliver where the private sector won’t and the public sector can’t. We generate income which doesn’t go to shareholders so we can reinvest all our profits in homes and communities.”

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