06 Apr

Nationwide gets back to its roots by building homes

Building society takes on the developers with plans for not-for-profit homesA century ago the predecessor to today’s Nationwide building society was instrumental in building Letchworth, the first of Britain’s garden cities. Now the mutual society is going back to the future and is to start building homes again for the first time in a hundred years, in a revolutionary not-for-profit venture challenging the major housebuilders’ grip on the property market.The society is starting small. The project, called Oakfield, close to Nationwide’s headquarters in Swindon, Wiltshire, is for 239 homes, making it a new neighbourhood, not a new town. It is aiming to build better – and bigger – homes as it has to cover just its costs, not squeeze out the 20%-plus margins that the big housebuilders usually expect. Continue reading…

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