Legal & General announces that it has acquired a 272 acre site in Arborfield, Wokingham. Helping to address the UK’s chronic housing shortage, Legal & General will apply its unique multi-tenure approach* in order to speed up housing delivery, reducing the time taken to deliver these homes by over five years.
27 Nov 2017
With outline planning consent for 1500 new homes, a school, shops and employment generating uses, it represents the second major site being brought forward by Legal & General’s housebuilding arm, Legal & General Homes. It recently started work on site at its first development, Buckler’s Park, a 250 acre, 1000-home development in Crowthorne, Berkshire.
Establishing housing capabilities across all tenures, Legal & General is delivering Build to Sell housing alongside Build to Rent, later living, student accommodation and affordable housing. It is also revolutionising construction methods through its modular factory in Leeds. Its ability to inject capital into large-scale sites coupled with this multi-tenure approach will accelerate UK housing delivery, supporting its targets to build more than 70,000 new homes over the next five to ten years.
Arborfield is located in a prime residential location in Berkshire, within fifteen minutes from the newly regenerated Bracknell town centre. Construction for the first phase of new homes is due to start at the end of next year. The site is large enough to provide a full range of housing options, from one bed apartments to five bed detached family homes. Over a third of the development will accommodate much-needed affordable housing, whilst over 44% of the total site will be dedicated to public open space.
Nigel Wilson, CEO of Legal & General, said: "The Budget creates the right backdrop for a real boost to one of the key areas of infrastructure – housing supply. This is the first substantive supply side policy for almost forty years, since council houses were sold in the 1980’s. Legal & General will therefore accelerate our roll-out of housing and associated infrastructure including on larger sites where we can create whole new communities like Crowthorne and Arborfield. We welcome the Chancellor’s stamp duty reform, which helps to address intergenerational unfairness, and would like to see this for young and old alike, enabling all age groups to access homes that best suit their needs."
James Lidgate, CEO of Legal & General Homes, commented: "We have a chronic housing shortage in the UK and speeding up the delivery of new supply is key to tackling this crisis. Adopting a multi-tenure approach means that we can create homes in a much shorter timescale as well as supporting people throughout their different life stages. Rather than taking 15 years to build 1500 new homes, we believe that we could achieve a 50% improvement in delivery."
Housing is one of Legal & General Capital’s key strategic sectors, due to the financing gaps that still exist, offering the opportunity for significant shareholder value, both through investments made directly by LGC and through businesses held by the wider Group. Legal & General has been involved in housing activities for nearly 20 years and is committed to addressing the UK’s chronic housing shortage through delivering high-quality sustainable and enduring homes.
A natural evolution and fit for its multi-tenure housing investment strategy, Legal & General has been involved in supply side housing activities for nearly 20 years. These include:
It is also a significant investor in social housing, care homes and student accommodation. This holistic approach provides Legal & General with the mechanisms to deliver high quality returns throughout market cycles by pivoting investment to where the need is greatest.
*Legal & General’s multi-tenure capability enables us to appraise complex development opportunities as a one stop shop and go on to deliver open market homes for sale, build to rent, senior living and affordable housing as single cohesive community.
Notes to editors
Legal & General Capital (LGC) is Legal & General Group’s alternative asset platform, creating assets for Legal & General Retirement and third-party clients in order to achieve improved risk-adjusted returns for our shareholders. LGC has built its capabilities in a range of alternative sectors, including in residential property; specialist commercial real estate; clean energy; alternative credit; and venture capital, which are all supported by long-term structural growth drivers, meet a financing gap and respond to a scarcity of supply that is underpinned by enduring societal needs.
Its purpose is to invest society’s capital for society’s benefit. Investing in the real economy and supporting the Group’s focus on climate and inclusive capitalism, LGC’s investments create jobs, change lives and contribute towards a net zero carbon future.
Legal & General has invested over £29bn in levelling-up regional economies, including through major UK-wide regeneration schemes and has recently made a commitment to enable all its new homes to operate at net zero carbon emissions from 2030.
(As of June 2021)
Established in 1836, Legal & General is one of the UK's leading financial services groups and a major global investor, with over £1.4 trillion in total assets under management* of which a third is international. We also provide powerful asset origination capabilities. Together, these underpin our leading retirement and protection solutions: we are a leading international player in pension risk transfer, in UK and US life insurance, and in UK workplace pensions and retirement income. Through inclusive capitalism, we aim to build a better society by investing in long-term assets that benefit everyone.
*at 31 Dec 2021