Ashley House is a social property developer, developing properties for health, housing, and community sectors. Working predominantly in the public sector, with charities and social enterprises. They are there to help them achieve the best outcomes for their clients and produce cost effective property solutions.
We talk with Tony Walters, CEO of Ashley House about the company, their history, and where they plan of taking the company. Begun in 1991 to develop GP surgeries; they have diversified to include affordable housing, and community buildings. Due to their recent acquisition of F1 Modular; they can now produce modular homes. This allows them access to a wider sector, education, retail etc.
With a long career in the industry, they already have a strong track record in the sector. They began to come up with a solution to GP development. That enabled them to grow quickly. It was from 2010 onward that they began to diversify further, using the expertise picked up through out their history.
How have they changed the way that health, social housing and GP surgeries are developed? They look at them in the most creative ways, specifically how to fund them creatively. They are not linked to a fund as such; they work with several funding partners. The client can either own the property outright, or Ashley house will find a fundee that want to own the property and then rent it to the clients.
They work with the clients to find a suitable route forward, rather than being rigid and forcing the clients to work within set parameters. The modular business has changed their business outlook, allowing typical routes or allowing modular build in a factory. Allows vast time gains.
The recent budget introduced a local housing allowance cap. This is a positive change for Ashley House. Their developments are created around the idea of fully furnished flats with access to communal services, specifically care. The cap means that their developments are no longer held back by the previous problems. It allows them to push and grow the business quite significantly, providing more of this much needed style of housing around the country.
Ashley house are also a founding member of the social stock exchange. They saw the benefits of creating investments for people that have a social purpose. You can understand where your money is going, and the good that it is doing.
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