• Trainees who are serious about entering the construction industry move onto PHASE 3 where they work on empty residential properties, alongside professional builders.
  • Trainees may be paid a wage or simply expenses, depending on their level of skill and experience.
  • We mediate between the builder and the trainee to ensure that learning, as well as work, takes place. Our professional builders are chosen carefully for their abilities as trainers and the trainees maintain portfolios to record their learning.
  • During this phase trainees will usually learn additional plumbing and electrical skills.
  • We project-manage these renovations, including the drawing of any plans, preparing schedules of work, applications for planning permission and building regulation consent.
  • To make these projects financially viable, we seek to negotiate initial rent-free and reduced rent periods from property owners.

This is a first floor, three bedroom flat which had been empty for five years.

The flat was renovated using a local firm of builders, with three of our trainees working alongside them.

The flat has now been let out as social housing through Southwark Council's rent deposit scheme. It is occupied by a family with three children who were formerly homeless.

The project was made viable through a rent-free period negotiated with the Council. We also received a grant and free materials from the charity CRASH and a professional surveyor provided his time for free.

There was a formal opening event on 5th December 2008 attended by over 20 people. We were very pleased to have David Ireland, Chief Executive of the Empty Homes Agency, there to make the opening speech (see middle picture above)