The experience of our property and social economy legal teams in community-led projects means that Wrigleys will advise your group with an empathy and understanding built up from working on many similar projects in the past.
If you are contemplating setting up a cohousing development, community land trust, housing co-operative or other community-led project, you will be in safe hands with us.
Solicitors at Wrigleys have been at the forefront of the community-led housing movement for over thirty years and understand the way these unique projects work. Our lawyers are empathetic and many are involved in community-led projects themselves, so have first hand experience of the practical issues that may arise.
We recognise that you don't just want to build houses, but want to build communities. Our experience, empathy and understanding will help you achieve your aims.
How Can Wrigley's Help?
We can help you with the following:
- Legal structure: setting up a legal entity to own and manage your community-led project and advising on the best way to structure your project to achieve your aims.
- Finance: financing your community-led housing project. This might include seed funding from members to get your project off the ground in the early days, community shares to raise funds from those in the local area and bank loans to acquire and develop your homes. We have good relationships with the main commercial lenders on community-led housing and are happy to put you in touch at the appropriate stage.
- Property: acquiring and developing your site, negotiating the terms of the deal with developers or other project partners, and granting leases to those who live on the development.
We offer all new community-led housing groups a free copy of our Guide to Legal Structures for Community-led Housing, and a free initial meeting or telephone call, to help get you started. Please get in touch with our community-led housing team to find out more.
Why use us?
- Experience: we have supported community-led housing groups for many years and over that time, have developed a deep understanding of the sector.
Most of the lawyers at Wrigleys are themselves trustees or volunteers of community-led or charitable organisations, giving us first hand practical experience of many issues that they might be advising on. One of our team is also a board member of the UK Cohousing Network.
- Networks: this sector is built on sharing knowledge and flourishes through us learning from each other. We are always happy to connect community-led clients with each other (with consent, of course), and maintain good relationships with a variety of project managers, lenders, architects, representative bodies and others who support this sector.
We also organise regular socials for community-led housing groups, to allow people to get together informally and share experiences.
- Values: the way we aim to treat our clients and colleagues matter greatly to us. We have recently worked with our suppliers to become a Living Wage Employer, for example, and we have been fortunate in attracting nationally recognised specialists, who have chosen to leave more commercially-oriented larger firms for the more flexible and less profit-driven collegiate environment which Wrigleys seeks to provide.
We were involved in setting up one of the first cohousing communities in the UK, Laughton Lodge in East Sussex. More recently, we have advised on innovative models such as Mutual Home Ownership Societies ("MHOS").
We have our model articles of association for co-housing groups and offer fixed fees for incorporating a cohousing company and drafting loan agreements between the company and its members.
We have a close working relationship with the UK Cohousing Network, and host regular socials for cohousing groups where we bring groups together to share knowledge and experience. Cohousing is still relatively new in the UK and we view our relationship with cohousing groups as mutually beneficial: we aim to learn from each other and develop the legal framework for this way of living together.
Contact us for a free copy of our Guide to Legal Structures for Community-led Housing.
- Lancaster Cohousing, Lancaster
- LILAC (Mutual Home Ownership Society), Leeds
- Cannock Mill Cohousing, Colchester
- On the Brink, Sheffield
- Shirle Hill, Sheffield
Community Land Trusts
We can help you establish a community land trust and develop housing and other assets for the benefit of your community.
We have our own model rules for a community benefit society, which can be adapted for use by CLTs and are particularly suitable for those looking to raise finance via a community share issue.
Download our CLT brochure here
- Leeds Community Homes, Leeds
- Yorspace, York
- Brighton and Hove Community Land Trust, Brighton
- Tipi Valley CLT, Wales
- Hay Habitat Limited, Manchester
Solicitors at Wrigleys have advised housing co-operatives for many years and can help you with setting up, loan and tenancy arrangements between members, bond issues and buying your property.
- Bowden Housing Co-operative, Devon
- Earth Heart Housing Co-operative, Derbyshire
- Ty Brethyn Housing Co-operative, Wales
- Turnstone Housing Co-operative, Nottingham
- South Downs Eco Housing Co-operative, Sussex
- Share Instead Housing Co-operative, Sheffield
- Wales Co-operative Centre, Wales
"Thank you for the guidance that you gave us during the initial stages of the process. Face to face, on the telephone in your literature and during the webinar you supported our efforts and we felt that we were in safe hands. Thank you."
- On the Brink - A Co-housing group in Sheffield
"Malcolm Lynch - A dedicated charities lawyer who really knows the subject, and who also has a very charitable spirit - you need to be able to empathise, and Malcolm really can."
- Chambers & Partners
"Wrigleys a reliable and efficient team that understands the charity sector and maintains a friendly and open approach".
- Chambers & Partners