Nuveen enters UK affordable housing sector in partnership with Preferred Homes

Nuveen Real Estate, one of the largest investment managers in the world, has announced its intention to enter the UK Affordable Housing sector on behalf of the TIAA General Account in a joint venture with Preferred Homes Limited (“PHL”), a for-profit Registered Provider of Affordable Housing, supported by Ashbourne Capital Partners (“ACP”), the UK based real estate asset management business.

The joint venture has identified an attractive pipeline of opportunities across three sites in the UK’s regions and cities, leveraging the expertise of local authorities where there is a significant undersupply of extra care housing. The partnership strategy is focused on the development of affordable retirement living and will integrate each scheme within its local area, providing opportunities for local businesses and an enhanced amenity offering to local residents.

Whilst truly affordable, the schemes are accessible and sustainable, enabling residents to live their lives alongside each other, respecting privacy but embracing community. The sites will contribute to the regeneration of town centres and residential areas across the UK as well as providing a direct solution to the loneliness epidemic amongst the elderly population. The platform will also help to reduce the cost burden on local authorities to provide care services to their residents by alleviating the fiscal pressures at local level and release funding for other initiatives.

With an excellent track record in commercial and residential sectors, the management team of ACP formed PHL in April 2020 enabling the joint venture to directly own and manage affordable housing assets. Retirement living is a growing need as the elderly population increases exponentially in the UK and ensuring affordability for those unable to fund from their own resources is a core principle of PHL’s business plan.

The sites will be delivered in well-connected locations with good access to public transport, targeting BREEAM ‘Very Good’ as a minimum standard on completion of development. Cycle stores will also be integrated into all designs and electric charging points to be provided in the car parks.

Bill Bateman, Managing Director for European Housing Strategies at Nuveen, said: “We have identified an opportunity to be an early mover in this emerging sector which offers huge scalability potential in the UK. With an increasingly ageing population and acute affordable housing shortage Nuveen are looking to provide long-term, impact-driven investment strategies which deliver risk adjusted returns as well as creating social value. We are really excited to be partnering with Preferred Homes to assemble a UK wide portfolio of well-connected, sustainable community-based housing to reassure people that their future care needs are accounted for.”

Findlay MacAlpine, Director of Ashbourne Capital Partners and CEO of Preferred Homes said: “Our interest in affordable housing is driven by a desire to extend the range of housing options available to older and vulnerable people and encourage more cost effective models of care to be delivered within sustainable, future proofed homes. We are delighted to be partnering with Nuveen to develop, own and manage ‘best in class’ social residential assets within the UK Affordable Housing sector.”

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