Our experienced finance and treasury team advises on the full range of lending transactions and security structures and regularly reviews UK and overseas structures and trends in housing finance. This has enabled us to work on non-traditional funding models of innovative bond and note issuance structuring, both in listed and private paper transactions.

Since the mid-1980s we have advised our RP clients in connection with various types of loan funding, which have become more sophisticated as the sector has advanced. We were responsible for drafting the first THFC bond issue, negotiating this with Trowers & Hamlins. We have acted in every form of loan agreement from the more traditional loan agreement with a single funder, to syndicated arrangements using the security trustee model.

Our finance team was originally created to service the needs of our housing sector clients and, although it has expanded into other market sectors, housing finance remains at the core of our finance practice. In recruiting for the team we have always taken into account our forecast developments in the market, so our team members have extensive experience of both listed and unlisted bond issues (with both in-house and external practice experience), with a particular expertise in restructuring listed bonds where this has been driven by mergers and acquisitions.

Finance

In addition to bond work, members of our team have developed expertise in relation to other tailored finance products (such as development finance structuring) and new sources of finance, such as crowdfunding for property development.

We have been involved in the drafting of the finance documents for six housing groups with four of these establishing new security trust arrangements including the taking out of charge large portfolios of property and recharging and designating to funders.

Securitisation and charging

In the last 8 years, Wright Hassall has undertaken 40 charging exercises for 12 separate RPs, as well as undertaking the property security work in connection with 3 bond issues and 4 private placements.

In short, a debt restructuring is an ideal time for a full health check for RPs so that standing orders and procedures are in a consistent format going forward. We are part of the NHF Securitisation Working Group and pioneered the repeal of the s133 restrictions. We have also undertaken complete due diligence exercises on unencumbered stock for seven housing groups.

Recent finance and treasury experience

  • Security work in three complete debt restructurings involving bonds for a number of housing groups;
  • Debt restructurings for a housing group and eight private placements for other RPs; 
  • Private placement for a new funder within the sector); 
  • Undertaking security and charging work for a bank under the HCA Kickstart initiative in respect of a revolving facility for a non-RP with cross guarantees giving cash flow for a large market sale development with transfer of affordable housing to RPs in the group;
  • Bond restructuring – extensive experience in leading restructuring of more than eight bond issues, required as a result of mergers and restructurings.
  • Undertaking the setting up of security trustee arrangements up of security trustee arrangements and dealing with the release of property from charge to an individual funder and putting back into charge and designating to the security trustee;
  • Negotiating with a London authority to secure grant funding pursuant to a s106 agreement on a large estate in London involving deeds of priority with existing funders;
  • Undertaking large scale due diligence exercises for four housing groups analysing the quality of the housing stock for charging.