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Social landlords can branch out to meet demand for private rent

Housing Minister Mark Prisk today laid down the gauntlet to social landlords across the country, to branch out and help meet the growing demand…

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Housing Minister Mark Prisk today laid down the gauntlet to social landlords across the country, to branch out and help meet the growing demand for rented homes.

In his first speech as Housing Minister, Mr Prisk urged housing associations to turn their expertise in providing social homes to also building new homes for private rent.

He called on landlords to bid for a share of a £10billion Government Guarantee and “provide the spark to get Britain building”, delivering homes built for new tenants - whether in social homes or for private rent.

“Tremendous opportunity”

A review of the private rented sector by Sir Adrian Montague highlighted real potential for the development of homes built specifically for private rent, with funding for these new properties coming from institutional investors.

But speaking to the National Housing Federation in Birmingham, Mr Prisk argued that social landlords could also make the most of the potential that Sir Adrian’s report identified.

The Minister pointed to Thames Valley Housing Association’s “Fizzy Living” scheme, which offers newly-built flats for rent on the open market in London’s East End, and urged more landlords to “take that leap of faith”.

He argued that with years of experience and expertise in providing affordable homes to rent and buy, housing associations could both continue delivering services for social tenants and offer homes for private tenants.

Last week the Government brought forward a range of positive measures to get Britain building. Mr Prisk will point out that landlords could be using these to make the most of this potential market.

The measures include:

  • New legislation for Government guarantees of up to £10billion for new rented homes; and
  • £300million capital funding towards delivering up to 15,000 new affordable homes and bringing 5,000 empty homes back into use

Mark Prisk said:

There’s a tremendous opportunity here. We know there is already a massive demand for housing in the private rented sector. Housing associations already provide excellent services to their tenants, but have the potential to offer homes to a much wider group of people.

By making the most of the new and positive measures we’re taking, social landlords can branch out and provide the spark to get Britain building.

Notes to Editors

  1. Housing Minister Mark Prisk made his speech to the National Housing Federation’s annual conference in Birmingham.

  2. The National Housing Federation is the umbrella body for England’s housing associations. Their national conference has been held at the International Conference Centre in Birmingham.

  3. On 6 September, the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister, along with Communities Secretary Eric Pickles, set out a major housing and planning package to deliver 70,000 new homes and 140,000 new jobs. Details can be found at:

  4. Sir Adrian Montague’s report, Review of the barriers to institutional investment in private rented homes, can be found at:

Published 17 September 2012