UK Government Announces Plans to Boost House building

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On 6 September the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister, alongside the Communities Secretary Eric Pickles, set out a major housing and planning package that they hope will help deliver:

  • up to 70,000 new homes, including affordable housing and opportunities for first-time buyers to get onto the housing ladder
  • 140,000 jobs and a boost to the construction sector
  • £40 billion guarantee for major infrastructure projects and £10 billion for new homes.

The package includes a series of measures aimed at supporting businesses, developers and first-time buyers, while slashing unnecessary red tape across the planning system.

The measures include:

  • Removing restrictions on house builders to help unlock 75,000 homes currently stalled due to sites being commercially unviable. Developers who can prove that council’s costly affordable housing requirements make the project unviable will see them removed.
  • New legislation for Government guarantees of up to £40 billion worth of major infrastructure projects and up to £10 billion of new homes. The Infrastructure (Financial Assistance) Bill will include guaranteeing the debt of Housing Associations and private sector developers.
  • Up to 15,000 affordable homes and bring 5,000 empty homes back into use using new capital funding of £300m and the infrastructure guarantee
  • An additional 5,000 homes built for rent at market rates in line with proposals outlined in Sir Adrian Montague’s report to Government on boosting the private rented sector
  • Thousands of big commercial and residential applications to be directed to a major infrastructure fast track and where councils are poor at processing decisions developers can opt to have their decision taken by the Planning Inspectorate. More applications also will go into a fast track appeal process.
  • 16,500 first-time buyers helped with a £280m extension of the successful ‘FirstBuy’ scheme, which offers aspiring homeowners a much-needed deposit and a crucial first step on the housing ladder.
  • For a time limited period, slashing planning red tape, including sweeping away the rules and bureaucracy that prevent families and businesses from making improvements to their properties, helping tens of thousands of home owners and companies.

The full news article can be read here – http://www.communities.gov.uk/news/newsroom/2211779

We await with interest to see how these measures work out in the static economy.

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