Civitas Social Housing invests mainly in homes for tenants with special needs. The company completed a £350million stock market flotation last year and is now keen to raise the same amount again with a new 100p-a-share offer.

The initial yield (the dividend divided by share price) is expected to be 3 per cent, rising to about 5 per cent by next year.

Safe space: The state pays the rent for special needs tenants in Civitas homes

Most of these tenants are under 30, with conditions such as autism, learning difficulties and acute physical disability. Their rents are almost exclusively paid by the Government, which means that income for Civitas investors is secure.

It also means investors can feel they are contributing to the wellbeing of some of society’s most vulnerable people. Often, they have come from institutions or long-term hospital care, and independent homes are both cheaper and have a very positive effect on residents.

 Civitas is also involved in trying to alleviate the UK’s homeless problem. There are 11,000 people at risk of sleeping rough every night in London alone. Many end up in hostels or temporary accommodation, which can be tough and costly.

Civitas works with Crisis, the homelessness charity, and local authorities, to help these people adapt to life in permanent rented accommodation.

Civitas shares have done well since it listed a year ago, rising from 100p to 109½p. The group has invested £300million and its homes now accommodate over 1,800 tenants. Demand for specialist supported homes is high and Civitas has a £500 million pipeline of transactions to complete.

The shares are available from most large stock brokers and the deadline for applications is Wednesday.

Midas verdict: Civitas was the first social housing Reit, it has great experience in the sector and has proved its mettle in the past year. Taking part in this new share offer should deliver a decent, long-term dividend income and allow investors to feel they are doing good.

This article first appeared in the Financial Mail on Sunday: