Everybody’s Talking About Housing

In the pensions world we talk about ESG, SRI, and Impact Investing. That’s “Environmental-Social-Governance” or “Socially Responsible Investing”, for the uninitiated.

In the self-administered world there’s a long tradition of investing for other reasons than just financial returns and in recent times the number of investors calling for their money to make a positive impact on society have increased.

We have with the recent public awareness of the housing calamity facing the country experienced a surge in interest in particular in the area of social housing. Self-administered investors are governed by pension rules which encourage long-term thinking, and this makes them excellent landlords. It is estimated that there are c.9000 tenancies in the sector. That’s 9000 homes not dependant on the vagaries of the buy-to-let sector or foreign vulture funds. The role of self-administered pensions in this area is rapidly gaining prominence with the proliferation of tenancies under the Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) scheme or long term letting to local authorities for social housing purposes. Both schemes are very much in favour among self-administered investors.

As mentioned in a previous blog, in 2019 the Government took steps to effectively stop self-administered pensions from making this type of impact investing. In ITC, though we don’t give financial advice, we are always in favour of facilitating the widest possible choice of investments, ensuring they comply within Revenue rules. Therefore, through our industry association we took an action against this move. It proved a judicious choice.

If you are interested in investing in social housing, contact your financial advisor or phone us on 01 661 1022 for more information.





*Please note this content is the view of the author and not of Independent Trustee Company