Start a CLT

Interested in starting a CLT? Below are some of the initial steps that will be involved as part of the process.

Talk to others and form a steering group

A CLT is a community initiative. You may think that there is a need for affordable housing or other assets or enterprises in the community, but what do others think? You'll need to talk to others about what they want to see in the community, or what the issues are.

Or perhaps you're already part of such a group - this could be an informal group of local people, or a more formal group starting from the Parish Council or Neighbourhood Forum - and you've decided that you want to tackle housing issues or set up an asset or enterprise. 

Soon the group will need to become a CLT steering group, usually with a mix of different skills and reasons for wanting to be involved. If the project progresses, in time the steering group will become the founding Board of the CLT.

Decide what the CLT will do

One of the first things that an emerging CLT will begin to think about is what the CLT will achieve and how it will achieve it.  All CLTs are different, and have different aspirations.  The vision of a CLT could be as simple as: "To develop affordable housing to enable young families to live and work in our village and make our community more sustainable". It will be vital that all members of the group share the vision.  

Have a Plan of Action 

There will be lots to do when setting up a CLT.  Although all groups are different and your journeys will be different too, some early steps are likely to be:

  • Get some initial support to scope out what you want to do and how. First contact the National CLT Network to find out what support is available; 
  • Hold a public meeting to inform the wider community of your plans, gain their agreement to go ahead, and ask for people to volunteer and join you;
  • Plan meetings or establish working groups to look at specific tasks. This could be establishing the CLT's legal structure, looking for sites, and collecting evidence of housing need;
  • Open a bank account and start raising funds. See the Funding section on sources of funding. 
  • Get the word out about your plans via articles in the local press or newsletter.

The National CLT Network has funding, resources and support and, in some parts of the country, you can get hands on support from a CLT Umbrella. Please visit the next step pages.