I got a twitter message from the editor of Pensions Week , David Rowley referring to this video of him interviewing Chair of Islington Pension committee, Richard Greening, about their investment into residential property. They are putting around 2.5% of their £800 million fund into it and hope for a long term 4-5% return above inflation, as well as increasing housing supply. Greater Manchester Pension Fund is doing something similar.
For years I have been puzzled why Council Pensions funds haven't invested in residential property? I never got a satisfactory answer from advisers or fund managers why this is so. While these schemes are for the private rented sector, I'll be obviously interested in social housing as well.
There are of course risks and concerns that many Council pension funds are too small to invest in such assets. Also the beneficiaries representatives need to be involved in the decision making since it is their pension futures that will be at risk.