As the Government comes under continued pressure to deliver on their new homes target, Philip Hammond reaffirmed his commitment in the recent Spring Budget announcements.
As expected there were no major surprises, with rumours that Mr Hammond will keep any significant policy changes until the Autumn budget.
London gets a boost
- Confirmation was given on the £1.67 billion funding package for London to build affordable homes for families living in the capital.
- This package will help to build 26,000 more of the affordable homes required. This is another step towards delivering an additional 116,000 affordable homes and will bring the total funding in London to £4.8 billion.
- The Government has already delivered nearly 82,000 affordable homes in the area, including 58,000 homes, specifically for rent since 2010.
Sir Oliver Letwin’s interim report to the Chancellor of the Exchequer
- Sir Oliver Letwin has also set out the next steps of his independent interim review investigating the gap between planning permissions granted and number of homes completed.
- According to the Government “The first phase, which aimed to identify the main causes of the gap by reviewing large housing sites where planning permission has already been granted, focused on information-gathering sessions with local authorities, developers and non-government organisations and visits to large sites.
- “Sir Oliver’s review has found that the absorption rate – the rate at which newly constructed homes can be sold into the local market – appears to be a fundamental driver of the rate at which houses are built.”
- His final report will be produced in time for the Autumn Budget.
West Midlands Funding Boost
- The West Midlands has been given a £100 million boost to fund a housing package to support the delivery of 215,000 new homes. The funding will help to acquire land and prepare it for housing.
- The Mayor of the West Midlands announced that he would be taking the Housing Infrastructure Fund Forward by funding a bid for Housing Growth Areas including the Commonwealth Games site at Perry Barr in Birmingham.
Getting Britain Building again
- A £60 million investment has also been announced to boost the Housing Growth Partnership fund that supports small and medium-sized housebuilders.
- Lloyds Banking Group has match funded bringing the total additional investment to £120 million.
Henry Knight, Managing Director, Springtide Capital commented: “The Spring Budget didn’t reveal anything drastic; however, it does detail the funds, and more importantly measures and research, which when combined will begin to deal with the housing crisis. Our client base is centred around London, where there is a severe lack of affordable housing; we see more property purchases on the borders of London because of this.”