Rural Housing

The shortage of affordable homes for local people can be a significant factor in the decline of rural facilities and services. Housing costs have soared and incomes have not kept pace with this increase.

In many areas of Devon the cost of an entry level home is more than 9 times the average income. This means that local people are often forced to leave their community to find a home they can afford. This affects people of all ages, from adult children wishing to leave home to young, growing families and older people who may wish to move to a smaller, more manageable property.

Devon Communities Together is a member of The Devon Rural Housing Partnership, a group of Local Authorities and Housing Associations working within Devon. The partnership has the combined skills to research the housing needs of communities and to work with those communities to deliver high quality, affordable housing in ways that are sympathetic to the particular needs of the community.

Our Rural Housing Team has developed a tried and tested process of working closely with our partners and rural communities to deliver affordable housing. We have a programme of work with our local authorities to carry out housing need surveys and community consultation, developing strong partnerships that will increase the provision of rural, affordable homes for local people in Devon.

Our clients include Parish and Town Councils, Housing Associations, Local Authorities, Community Land Trusts, self-build groups, landowners and private developers.

Devon Rural Housing Partnership

Housing needs surveys

Housing need surveys are undertaken in communities to establish the level and nature of current and future housing need. This can identify the number of households that need to downsize, upsize, or simply need additional housing and can lead to influencing new housing provision in area, often specifically for people with a local connection to that parish. 



Click here for more information on Housing Needs Surveys. 

Commission the Rural Housing Team

Our Rural Housing Enablers, Lesley Nel, Janice Alexander & Colin Savage, undertake consultancy work in addition to the programmes of work undertaken for our Local Authority and Registered Provider partners.

Services include:

  • Housing needs assessments and surveys in and beyond Devon
  • Support for Neighbourhood Planning groups on housing issues, particularly consultation and options 
  • Village site assessments and options appraisals 
  • Community development/ engagement work 
  • Training and workshops 
  • Support to develop a Community Land Trust
  • Surveying of older people's housing aspirations and needs 
  • Bespoke reports on any issue relating to rural affordable housing 

Rural Housing Week 2019

In July, the Rural Housing team celebrated Rural Housing week. With the theme of 'Building for Rural Communities' the week focused on how housing associations can build more homes that commit to high/future design and how they improve the quality of their existing homes. The celebratory week featured drop in events and opening events, which included visits from local MPs. You can read more about what the team got up to, below. 

Read more here

Devon Rural Housing Partnership Annual Report: 2018-2019

Read all about the Devon Rural Housing Partnership's achievements, events and updates in the latest annual report!