Improving homes in remote and rural communities.
Crofters across Scotland will be able to apply for larger sums of money to upgrade their housing under the Croft House Grant.
To help ensure more crofters and their families can benefit, the government is increasing the grant rate for home improvements from 40% to 60% of the total project cost – with a maximum grant of £38,000.
The grant scheme also supports crofters to build new homes, allowing them to maximise the full potential of their crofts and to retain and attract people to remote and rural communities.
Last year the Scottish Government awarded more than £850,000 in Croft House Grant funding to support 28 crofters and their families.
Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and Islands Mairi Gougeon said:
“Crofters are so important to our rural and island communities. They play an integral role contributing to the long-term sustainability of these often fragile areas.
“The Croft House Grant enables crofters to enjoy the full potential of their crofts while generating economic success - and I have seen first-hand the difference it can make.
“We must do all we can to attract and retain people in our crofting communities, particularly young families. That’s why we are committed to continuing and improving this vital support.”
Chief executive of the Scottish Crofting Federation Patrick Krause said:
“Housing and fuel poverty are major issues we face in rural Scotland, and, despite the soaring costs, we need more homes, homes that that are ecologically sound. So this is very welcome news.
"It is hearting to see Scottish Government adding to a very effective scheme that has helped hundreds of families to get established, and particularly in helping with improvements to existing buildings, upgrading to be more environmentally efficient, extending and bringing older buildings back into use. It is a win for all.”
Find out more about the Croft House Grant scheme and how to apply on the Scottish Government's Rural Payments and Services website: Croft House Grant (ruralpayments.org)
Crofting tenure requires crofters to live within 32 kilometres of their croft and provide their own housing, so the Croft House Grant can assist crofters to meet their statutory duty. There are four application rounds every year, March, June, September and December, and eligible applications are assessed using a scoring system, which is designed to target support at those who would not be able to build or improve their home without grant support.
Since the scheme was launched in 2007 more than £24.2 million has been awarded to over 1,100 families and individuals living and working in rural and island communities.
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