From short-term licences to long leases, local community and voluntary groups are increasingly seeking opportunities to take on the management or ownership of buildings and land from local authorities or other public bodies.
This process is known as Community Asset Transfer.
Voluntary organisations and social enterprises (VCSE) often find that they’re held back because (unlike many businesses) they are asset poor. Owning assets can open a number of opportunities and enable your organisation to grow, so Community Asset Transfer (CAT) is very appealing.
In this time of public sector downsizing and re-alignment there is ever increasing interest in Community Asset Transfer. Public authorities are tasked with reducing costs and maximizing income and are re-examining their property portfolios. This includes selling off assets and considering whether some assets can be transfered to community use.
Community Asset transfer is a fantastic opportunity for VCSEs, but can also be a very complex process, which is why there are a range of programmes to support community groups to consider the the issues, for example:
- Building the business case
- Business planning
- Negotiating leases
- Due diligence
- Risk management
- Accessing finance (social and traditional)
We have wide experience from “both sides of the coin” when it comes to community asset transfer, that is, we have worked with organisations undertaking feasibility studies, market analysis, community consultation and developing business plans as well as working with the local authority to enable them to better understand the VCSE sector, undertake due diligence checks and ensure appropriate asset locks.
We have extensive in house experience, but also work with a range of trusted suppliers who may also be needed for example: solicitors; architects and construction and environmental specialist. We offer a range of advice, guidance and technical support on asset transfer to community groups including:
- Feasibility and viability analysis (ensure an asset rather than a liability is being transferred)
- Business planning (including enterprise and income generation)
- Capital investment proposals
- Financial modelling / projections
- Governance and legal structures
- Due diligence
- Capacity building pre and post transfer
So if you’re considering taking on an asset and need support, or just want to know more then call us, we can help.