Independent Report Praises Placefirst For Far-reaching Social Impact of Rental Homes and Firm’s Commitment to ESG


Independent Report Praises Placefirst For Far-reaching Social Impact of Rental Homes and Firm’s Commitment to ESG

Placefirst, the Award-winning build-to-rent specialist has invested more than £134m into neighbourhoods

The Good Economy praises Placefirst for refurbishing homes that other developers deemed unviable

Its report reveals that £5.2m is spent annually by Placefirst residents in local economies

An independent report has praised award-winning build-to-rent specialist Placefirst for the far-reaching social impact of its schemes and commitment to ESG.


According to independent social impact advisory firm The Good Economy, the build-to-rent regeneration specialist has invested more than £134 million in total into the development, regeneration, refurbishment and upkeep of its neighbourhoods since launching in 2010.


In addition, The Good Economy estimated that residents at Placefirst’s homes across the UK spent an estimated £5.2 million last year in their neighbourhoods across multiple local authority areas, boosting local economies.


Some 42% of residents were found to have relocated from outside the local authority, “bringing new skills and income to the area”, helping to level up places in need of investment. A fifth were working for the NHS and a further third worked in hospitality, retail, technology, and education.


The investment in Welsh Streets – Placefirst’s 283-home flagship Liverpool scheme – created a “ripple effect”, according to The Good Economy, which subsequently saw a nearby housing association invest more than £17 million in the local area.


It added that Placefirst inspired additional “small investments, such as local landlords and businesses refurbishing their properties and an increase in small businesses”.

Placefirst’s retrofitting of existing housing stock where possible was also praised by the report, as refurbishment emits 36% less carbon than demolishing and constructing new assets. Five out of its 11 neighbourhoods (58%) are comprised of mostly refurbished homes. [1]


One local authority told The Good Economy that it is likely several derelict properties in its area would have been demolished had Placefirst not rescued and refurbished them.


Placefirst’s portfolio also scored highly on energy efficiency, with 96% of its homes receiving an EPC rating of C or higher and a third (32%) receiving either B or A ratings. It added that 92% of homes which already had EPC ratings but were later refurbished by Placefirst saw those ratings increase.

Sarah Forster, CEO and co-Founder of The Good Economy, said: “Our findings show that since its inception in 2010, Placefirst has made a real difference to the communities where it operates. In particular, when it invests in derelict locations in need of regeneration, the benefits to the wider area are significant.”


The report stated: “Properties were mostly long-term vacant prior to acquisition by Placefirst and in a state of serious disrepair. They were often not attractive to or deliverable by other developers due to their complexity, which resulted in an association with a higher level of risk and therefore lack of financial viability.”


David Mawson, CEO at Placefirst, commented: “It’s fantastic to have an independent report spotlight the genuine impact our developments are having on communities up and down the country.


“Our aim is to create thriving communities across the UK through high-quality sustainable housing –and this research confirms we’re doing just that.


“The UK is home to the oldest housing stock in Europe, so it is little wonder, then, that so many renters are today living in poor-quality housing.

“That’s why we are so proud of everything we do at Placefirst – not only are we delivering thousands of desperately-needed new homes, we are also breathing new life and prosperity into communities.

“Our schemes have also delivered significant benefits to the local authority partners that we have worked with successfully over many years, providing council tax income and delivering high-quality homes for long-term rental.”

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