Contour Homes, Liverpool Housing Trust, Ribble Valley Homes, Hyndburn Homes and Peak Valley Housing Association will now operate as a single organisation under the same brand.
Onward has 35,000 homes across Greater Manchester and Cheshire, Merseyside and Lancashire, and employs around 800 people.
It plans to build more than 1,600 new homes over the next five years and invest £90m in its existing properties.
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Bronwen Rapley, chief executive at Onward (pictured above, right), said: “Today we move forward as one organisation under the Onward brand, and we do so with a clear vision, a simplified structure and a shared purpose.
“We will combine the benefits of size and greater financial strength with a truly local focus through investment in our neighbourhoods.
“We want to be visible and accessible, making a positive difference in the communities we serve.”