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£40m Private Placement funding for Howard Cottage
Case studies

£40m Private Placement funding for Howard Cottage

Background
  • Howard Cottage is a unique housing association based in Letchworth Garden City
  • Established over 100 years ago, it owns over 1,600 homes in one of the country’s only remaining true Garden Cities
  • The majority of its homes are leased by the Garden City Heritage Foundation – and the associated payments are recycled into the development of the town
  • After successfully extending the leases on a large proportion of its homes, the association had ambitious plans to grow but was constrained in its ability to do so by an expensive debt portfolio, reliant entirely on bank funding and with restrictive covenants
Our Approach

JCRA worked closely with Howard Cottage through every stage of the refinancing process:

  • A review of capacity held within the business, outside of the restrictions of the debt portfolio
  • Formulating a detailed funding strategy, including clear objectives and the optimal financing route
  • Guiding the Board through the key milestones of the project
  • Focused on the unique story and strength of the credit
  • Sought to extend the average life of the debt portfolio whilst also reducing average cost of funding
  • Implemented a competitive process in raising both short-term bank funding and longer term funding through a private placement
Benefits
  • A simplified debt portfolio, with a reduced number of lenders
  • Significant reduction in average cost of funding and extended average life by 10 years
  • A new, very competitively priced £20m revolving loan facility from a new lender to the association
  • A £40m, 30 year private placement, which priced at a spread inside that being achieved in the public markets by much larger associations
  • With a proportion of deferred funding to assist Howard Cottage with any potential cost of carry
 

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