Communities will be able to use their reward for going for growth on whatever they wish locally, such as council tax discounts for residents or facilities like playgrounds.
The New Homes Bonus, to be introduced early in the Spending Review period, will mean more homes built where they are needed and is intended to reverse the decline in the number of homes being built, currently languishing at its lowest peacetime level for 80 years.
The minister confirmed that councils who take action now to give planning consent and support the construction of new homes where they are needed and wanted will receive direct and substantial benefit for their actions.
Mr Shapps urged councils to open up an honest and direct debate with the communities they serve about the benefits of building new homes in their area - how they can reap the benefits of development and not just the costs.
Grant Shapps said:
“We will not tell communities how or where they should grow. But the New Homes Bonus will ensure that those communities that go for growth reap the benefits of development, not just the costs.
“With housebuilding at its lowest peacetime levels for over 80 years action is needed now to build the homes the country needs. That’s why these new powerful incentives to build will be introduced early in the Spending Review period. And it’s why I have confirmed that those councils who go for growth now will reap the rewards. So I urge councils to seize the moment and open up a debate with their communities now about the new homes they need and how they would use the new Bonus.”
The government wants to hear the views of councils, communities and industry as it finalises the scheme. A consultation paper on the final scheme will be published following the spending review.