Earlier this year Glenkens & District Trust commissioned South of Scotland Community Housing to undertake a housing needs and demand analysis for communities in the Glenkens.

Housing had already been identified as a hot topic in the Glenkens and District Community Action Plan, published in September 2020, and this was brought into ever sharper focus by changes in rural housing supply and demand wrought by the pandemic and changes to the energy efficiency requirements for rented properties.

GDT sought the assistance of South of Scotland Community Housing (SOSCH) to explore the views of the communities in the area on this topic.
A Housing Needs and Demand Assessment (HNDA) is the key that unlocks the door to strategic and funding support for community-led housing initiatives as it is a key component to demonstrate that there is need and demand without which projects would not receive funding support.

SOSCH developed a broad survey to look at housing needs and demands over the 10 communities within the GDT area. Local employers were also consulted on the impact of housing issues on their workforce.
The aim of the survey was to produce data for individual communities and community organisations , who could then explore the potential for community-led housing solutions using the survey findings to underpin the start of any future project.

In total there were 146 responses to the survey with most responses coming from four communities: Balmaclellan, Carsphairn, New Galloway and Kells, and St. John’s Town of Dalry.
Respondents provided plenty of written anecdotal responses alongside the survey questions which highlighted concerns around the lack of housing available as well as affordability in our rural housing market. 
27% of respondents indicated that their housing did not meet their needs with 51% of this group stating that the main factor were issues relative to energy efficiency and running costs. 
Glenkens & District Trust will also consider how best to use this useful report and ensure it is circulated to all relevant groups and individuals to seek to get some momentum behind the numerous  issues raised. In the meantime if there are any local groups or community organisations who have an idea for a project to develop community-led housing,  for further advice and information please contact SOSCH who will be happy to provide support with your project.
You can read the full report here.