The government has set out comprehensive housing measures that will address the needs of people at different stages of their lives, ensuring the housing market works for everyone, not just the privileged few.
The Autumn Statement detailed investment of over £7.2 billion in housing. This means that the government now expects to double, in real terms, annual capital spending on housing over the course of this Parliament.
The latest house building figures out today (24 November 2016) show housing starts are at their highest level in more than 8 years. Housing completions are also holding up strongly, and have increased by 7% compared with the same quarter a year earlier.
The further investment will help create a step change in the number of new homes being built, both in this Parliament and beyond. It includes:
- a new Housing Infrastructure Fund of £2.3 billion to unlock new housing supply with the potential to deliver up to 100,000 homes
- £1.4 billion to deliver an additional 40,000 affordable housing starts by 2020 to 2021 - in addition, the government will relax restrictions on grant funding so providers can deliver a mix of homes for affordable rent and low cost ownership, to meet the housing needs of people at different stages of their lives
- £2 billion of funding to pilot ‘accelerated construction’ to speed up house building on surplus public sector land (£1.7 billion once Barnett Consequentials are factored in)
- £1.8 billion of extra spending by Housing Associations from sources other than central government
Communities Secretary, Sajid Javid said:
We have been clear that we need to build a lot more homes if we are to achieve a country that works for everyone. That is why we are announcing the biggest dedicated housing investment in a generation to get house building firing on all cylinders.
With a doubling in capital spending, we are injecting the stimulus the market needs for a step change in the number of homes being built in the places people want to live - both in this Parliament and beyond
Housing Minister, Gavin Barwell said:
The government has set out an ambition of creating a country that works for everyone. The Autumn Statement ensures we are taking steps to deliver this by building more of the right homes, in the right places.
We will shortly be setting out further details to increase housing supply and tackle rising housing costs in our Housing White Paper.
Further housing measure announced today include:
- funding an expanded regional pilot of the Right to Buy for housing association tenants and,
- given the high costs of renting, the launch of a consultation on banning letting agents from charging fees to tenants
- doubling the size of the Rough Sleeping Fund from £10 million to £20 million
The forthcoming Housing White Paper will set out further details of a comprehensive package of reforms to increase housing supply and tackle rising housing costs.