Nationwide to help 750,000 people into a home of their own and one million to start saving by 2017

Major long-term drive to boost home occupation and help savers

07 November 2012

Today, Nationwide Building Society is launching a major initiative to boost the nation’s capabilities in housing, money management skills and communities with support from a number of charitable partners including Shelter and National Numeracy.

Over the next five years, under the pillars of Your Home, Your Money and Your Community, Nationwide will:

  • Help 750,000 people into a home of their own (Your Home)
  • Empower one million people to start saving (Your Money)
  • Strengthen local communities by investing and unlocking £15 million directed by its customers and employees (Your Community)

Graham Beale, Chief Executive at Nationwide, said: “I believe Nationwide is ideally placed to take a lead on tackling the serious issues of housing, money management and communities. Our mutual status enables us to meet the needs of our members, rather than chase short-term profit for shareholders, and that means we can focus on addressing the issues that really matter to our customers, their families and the communities where they live. We look forward to working with our partners and, where possible, with MPs and the Government in our Citizenship activities.”

Nationwide conducted extensive research with its customers, employees and wider stakeholders that highlighted housing, financial guidance and community investment as their three main areas of concern. With 232,000 new homes needed each year1, 28% of households having no savings2 and community charities seeing levels of giving fall by 10% since 20083, it is easy to understand why.

Nationwide has a strong heritage of tackling social issues such as housing and financial education. For example, since 2009 over 200,000 people have been given financial skills training by over 1,700 new volunteers trained through our MoneyActive Programme with Citizens Advice Bureau.

Living On Your Side will initially focus on creating offerings specifically designed to enable people to access homes and savings for the first time, mobilising Nationwide’s 16,000 employees to engage with community projects and supporting housing and personal finance charities such as Shelter, MoneyAdvice Trust and National Numeracy.

For Your Home, the Society will explore further how it can support affordable housing and develop new innovative products for the housing market as it did with Save to Buy. Nationwide is also launching a new £1 million partnership with Shelter, aimed at helping 16,000 people who are either at risk of losing their homes or vulnerable people with no housing at all. For Your Money, Nationwide has launched a new four-year partnership with National Numeracy. For Your Community, the Society is launching its new Community Match programme giving customers the chance to choose the local charities they want Nationwide to support when in-branch, online and at member events.

Campbell Robb, Shelter CEO, said: “It’s good to see a financial services organisation like Nationwide Building Society really putting effort into making a difference to the lives of those in housing need. Shelter is a lifeline for anyone who is homeless or suffering bad housing and we’re proud to join forces with Nationwide to share our ideas and develop creative ways of tackling these difficulties.”

Mike Ellicock, CEO at National Numeracy, said: "We are really pleased that Nationwide is showing its support by helping people learn how to manage their money. Everyone needs to have decent numeracy skills so they can plan their spending and saving wisely, and the backing of Nationwide in our campaign to improve the UK’s numeracy is invaluable.”

Launch photographs are available to download via this link:
An online video of the photo-shoot taking place is available via this link:

Notes to editors:

Living on your side

Living On Your Side

The report is available online here and PDF is available here.


Your Home: help 750,000 people into a home of their own by 2017

  • 232,000 new homes need to be built each year to meet demand in England alone, yet only 102,830 were built in 2010 (Government Housing Strategy)
  • First time buyers

    • In 2011 one in four of all our mortgages helped a first-time buyer into a home, the result of providing innovative products such as Save to Buy and an independent First-Time Buyers’ Guide
    • We will explore developing new product offers for first-time buyers and holding/attending education events that assist first-time buyers in the process of buying their first home

    Affordable & social housing

    • Nationwide has been one of the major lenders to social housing associations over the last 20 years
    • We will explore if we can finance Community Land Trusts, non-profit community-based organisations that develop housing at permanently affordable levels

    Rental market

    • Our subsidiary, The Mortgage Works, offers specialist Buy to Let products for both experienced and first time landlords
    • We will also explore developing a Guide to Renting for tenants and setting up a Buy to Let hub to support our intermediaries

    Homeless & people at risk of losing their home

    • Our Triage team supports customers in financial difficulties – our residential arrears rate is around a third of the industry average and our repossession rates are very low
    • Launching a new £1 million partnership with Shelter, aimed at helping 16,000 people who are either at risk of losing their homes or vulnerable people with no housing at all


Your Money: help one million people to start saving by 2017

  • 28% of households in the UK have no savings at all (DWP)
  • Championing saving

    • We have championed consumer issues such as the order of payments on credit cards and provide products for young savers such as the Junior Cash ISA & Smart Accounts
    • We will explore developing new savings products for young people to help them be money savvy before going into adult life

    Improving financial education

    • We have also produced a suite of independent Money Guides on borrowing, savings and investment, debt and spending wisely
    • Launching a new partnership with National Numeracy in 2012, a new charity created to develop and support numeracy skills in the population at large

    Helping people out of debt

    • Our MoneyActive programme with Citizens Advice Bureau saw 200,000 people given financial skills training by 1,700 new MoneyActive volunteers
    • We plan to undertake research to find out why some people seem able to save despite their circumstances and use the findings to develop new programmes


Your Community: investing and unlocking £15 million in local communities by 2017, as directed by customers and employees

  • Giving levels to charity have fallen by 10% since 2008 (NCVO)
  • Employee involvement

    • Our 16,000 employees have 14 hours per year to volunteer in the local community and our 100+ Community Champions drive employee involvement at a local level
    • Volunteering will be part of personal development of employees, including our Senior Executive Development Programme

    Empowering our customers

    • Nationwide donates 1% of pre tax profits to charity following a member vote in 2007 and our member vote at our AGMs has raised over £1 million for charity
    • We will give customers the opportunity to nominate and vote on local charities in-branch, online and at our member events

    Schools and young people

    • Nationwide Education, our award winning educational resource for 2-18 year-olds, has attracted over 35 million hits and downloads since it was launched in 2007
    • Launching our Schoolslink programme where our employees will deliver financial education and employability sessions in schools using our Nationwide Education platform


Background on Targets

Your Home
We define ‘home of your own’ as covering the support we give to four key groups: a) first-time buyers; b) people in affordable and social housing; c) landlords and tenants in the important rental market; d) helping the homeless and those at risk of losing their home. Our target is based on the number of people we help, rather than the number of families or number of homes.

Nationwide supports other forms of home ownership in addition to our 750,000 home of your own target. For example, we help around 100,000 people per year to move into a new home. This has a positive social and economic impact on the UK, but we have excluded that activity from our Your Home target to focus on those groups where we feel we can make the biggest impact from a citizenship perspective.

How will we get to our 750,000 goal?

  • 33% through first-time buyers
  • 12% through affordable and social housing
  • 55% through other initiatives to get and keep people in a home

Your Money
We define ‘start saving’ by those people who are not currently saving and this includes young people opening their first savings account. Our aim is to help people save on a regular basis and our primary focus is going to be on young people. The form of saving is multiple, so includes ISAs, young people’s savings accounts and other saving vehicles.

How will we get to our one million goal?

  • 88% through new young people’s savings accounts
  • 12% through helping customers become regular savers for the first time

Your Community
We define ‘investments’ as donations made by Nationwide and ‘unlocking’ as support through employee and customer fundraising, employee volunteering and funding from our suppliers, government and other stakeholders. Critically, the charities and causes we support through the £15 million will be determined by our customers and employees.

Nationwide will make other charitable contributions in addition to our £15 million commitment. Nationwide is the sole funder of The Nationwide Foundation, which has distributed £29 million of grants to charities and good causes since it was established in 1997. Our strategic national charity partnerships with Shelter, National Numeracy and Money Advice Trust will also be in addition to the £15 million, as the investment will not be directed by our customers or employees.

How will we get to our £15 million goal?

  • 41% through Nationwide donations
  • 37% through employee and customer fundraising
  • 14% through employee volunteering
  • 8% through unlocking funding from suppliers, government and other stakeholders

Link to Nationwide Education and money guides:

Link to Your Nationwide:

Link to Nationwide Foundation:

1Source: DCLG
2Source: Department for Work & Pensions (2010)
3Source: NCVO

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