Housing associations make up a huge chunk of the property market and are among the UK’s largest landlords. As well as being the main provider of supported accommodation and an alternative to council-owned housing, they also offer a range of shared ownership properties.
As a sector, housing associations look to be ideally placed to benefit from Building Information Modelling. Being developers as well as landlords, the advantages of adopting the process right from the initial planning stages would seem to be obvious. Despite this, housing associations are yet to realise the full potential of BIM.
A new initiative is seeking to redress this. The joint project is a collaboration between leading housing associations and property industry professionals and is endorsed by both the National Housing Federation and UK BIM Alliance. The aim is to bring together a cross-section of BIM experts to share knowledge and experience with HAs unfamiliar with digital technology and how this can be integrated into existing working practices.
As part of this, a set of ISO 19650 compliant documents are being produced to give housing associations a “quick start” guide to BIM. These documents, to be published towards the end of this year, will contain information on how to collate, structure and maintain data, including:
• Creating a business case for BIM
• Procurement process
• Appointment of relevant professionals
• Applying BIM to existing buildings
With the Building Safety Bill set to move into law in Spring 2021, all landlords will be seeking more accessible and reliable systems in order to document vital building and fire safety information. Encouraging greater digital adoption within this sector makes perfect sense, helping housing associations to manage assets more efficiently and provide a more pleasant and safer environment for their tenants.
A short introductory brochure, ‘BIM for Housing Associations: Asset Management in the 21st Century’ can be downloaded from here: Bim For Housing Associations Brochure