The links and information here may be useful for NHC members looking to develop their own tenant enterprise schemes.

HACT/CDFA Startup Microenterprise Project

This HACT and Community Development Finance Association (CDFA) project aims to bring together resources from housing associations (HAs), Community Development Finance Institutions(CDFIs) and social investors to create a ring-fenced loan fund to support residents looking to startup their own businesses. CDFIs lend money to businesses, social enterprises and individuals who struggle to get finance from high street banks and loan companies. They help deprived communities by offering loans and support at an affordable rate to people who cannot access credit elsewhere.

The CDFI will manage the loan fund for the housing provider and that money will be matched by the social investor to create a significant level of funds. The funding model for each pilot will look like this:

HASocial InvestorTotal

The £100,000 additional funding will come from the Startup Loan Company. This is a government funded initiative that provides startup support in the form of a repayable loan together with a business mentor for entrepreneurs.

The business mentor will provide pre-startup advice and support which will includes ideas development, business planning and application preparation, as well as post-loan support and mentoring which include training and workshops, peer-to-peer learning and expert mentoring. This additional support amounts to £1,000 per startup.

The interest rates on the loan are capped at 6% and there are no setup fees or early repayment charges. Typically, the loans awarded will range from £1,000 to £5,000 and will be repayable over one to five years.

Contact John Coburn, HACT Network Manager:

New Enterprise Allowance

This is a Job Centre Plus scheme which can provide money and support to help tenants in receipt of benefits start their own bsuiness. It is available to those aged 18 and over who are currently receiving Job Seekers’ Allowance, Income Support as a lone parent, or Employment and Support Allowance (work-related activity group).

Applicants can get a weekly allowance paid for up to 26 weeks, and apply for a loan to help with business startup costs. They can also access mentoring support.

Find out more about New Enterprise Allowance.

Pop-Up Business School

Pop-Up have worked with a number of housing associations, including NHC members Leeds Federated HA and Cheshire Peaks and Plains Housing Trust. Find our more about Pop-Up’s work with housing associations here.