Intermediate Rent

The Department for Communities has produced a new affordable housing policy which aims to create an additional supply of homes, providing a new affordable “Intermediate Rent” housing option.

Affordable housing

This is part of a programme of work to increase the supply of affordable housing and intends to complement the support already in place for social housing and shared ownership (or intermediate housing for sale). This new affordable housing product can also contribute to supporting the delivery of affordable housing through Local Development Plans, which are being taken forward by Councils.

The new Intermediate Rent policy, which sets out the framework for Intermediate Rent to allow for the future development of a new supply of high quality, long-term, affordable housing with support services comes following a public consultation on the new policy. All background papers including the consultation papers, equality screening, Consultation Outcome Report and summary document can be accessed on the Departmental website.

What is Intermediate Rent?

Intermediate Rent is a new housing rental model for the local housing market.  It intends to provide an additional rental choice for lower to moderate income households, providing longer-term, higher quality, well-managed homes at below market rents. Intermediate Rent can provide a solution for households struggling to meet open market rental costs, and those wishing to enter low cost home ownership in the future.

The Intermediate Rent Policy intends to:

  • create a new supply of homes
  • provide much needed high-quality housing at below market rents for those on lower to moderate incomes
  • offer homes for rent with at least a 20% discount on prevailing private market rents for a similar property type and size within a locality
  • provide homes of a size and type suitable for the number of occupants, in locations where people wish to live
  • alleviate some of the up-front barriers to accessing a rented home and be targeted towards eligible lower to moderate income households
  • offer enhanced security of tenure by making available tenancies of up to five years at a time and the option to renew subject to the agreement of the landlord and tenant, and
  • offer tenants access to effective and prompt property management and tenancy support services

Intermediate Rent tenancies are a form of private rented tenancy, therefore all of the rights and obligations in place in respect of any private tenancy apply to Intermediate Rent tenancies.

Intermediate Rent homes can make a positive difference for tenants when it comes to rental affordability and can reduce or remove some of the barriers which some people can face in finding and sustaining a tenancy in a home that meets their needs.

Intermediate Rent Policy and ‘Homes for Intermediate Rent Design Standards’  

The Intermediate Rent policy document, which has been developed following extensive stakeholder engagement, outlines the key principles of the Intermediate Rent housing product and sets the framework for a home to be offered as “Intermediate Housing for Rent.”   

To completement the policy a bespoke “Homes for Intermediate Rent Design Standards” document has been produced to provide information on the standards expected for Intermediate Rent homes. It sets outs the essential and desirable construction, layout and facilities criteria which Intermediate Rent homes should meet, both internally and externally.

Departmental support to deliver Intermediate Rent homes

The Department for Communities continues to work on complementary arrangements to help to financially support the development and letting of Intermediate Rent homes in the future.

More detail on any financial support will be available in due course. 

Intermediate Rent can also be developed without Government financial support, however unfunded providers should refer to and follow the content of the policy in so doing.


If you require clarification regarding the policy intentions or wish to comment on the Design Standards document, please email the Department for Communities Intermediate Rent project team.

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