Value of community development finance institution loans up by 50 per cent

But CDFIs meet less than a third of the total value of applications

The value of loans made by UK community development finance institutions rose by more than 50 per cent in the year to March 2009, according to a new report by the sector's umbrella body.

Inside Out: Weathering the Storm, published today by the Community Development Finance Association, shows that the CDFI sector lent £113m in the twelve months to March, up from £76m in the previous year.

But CDFIs were able to meet less than a third of total loan applications, which reached £360m in the period, up from £160m in the previous year.

Social enterprises accounted for about £72m of total lending and approximately £254m of applications. Almost 70 per cent of social enterprise loans were taken out to buy or renovate property.

The report was based on responses from 63 of the 68 CDFIs in the UK. It shows that CDFIs, which also lend to small businesses and individuals unable to access high-street credit, have themselves found it harder to obtain the capital they need, the report says.

About half of the organisations that responded said raising money from any source had grown more difficult, and none said it had grown easier. More than 70 per cent said there had been a fall in the income they received from investments.

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