LGA responds to May's social housing announcement

By agency reporter
September 20, 2018

Responding to the announcement on social housing made by the Prime Minister, Lord Porter, Chairman of the Local Government Association, said: “Councils have always been proud of their housing and tenants and the positive recognition of social housing by the Prime Minister today must be shared by all.

“Our national housing shortage is one of the most pressing issues we face. Any new access to funding for housing associations to employ more brickies and less bureaucrats and build more affordable homes is positive but does not go far enough.

“Homes for affordable and social rent are desperately needed across the country now, not in 2022, and the measures announced today fail to provide the funding certainty councils also need to play a leading role in solving our housing crisis.

“The Prime Minister is wrong to suggest that councils are not capable of building the new homes at scale without recognising they are being hamstrung by Treasury restrictions which prevent them from borrowing against their existing housing stock.

“The last time this country built homes at the scale that we need now was in the 1970s when councils built more than 40 per cent of them. Councils were trusted to get on and build homes that their communities needed, and they delivered, and they can do so again.

“If our country is to get back to building the 300,000 homes a year we need, then the Government needs to ensure all areas of the country can borrow to invest in building new affordable homes and the necessary infrastructure to go with them.

“The Government’s renewed emphasis on social housing and its tenants must be backed up in the forthcoming Spending Review.”

* Local Government Association https://www.local.gov.uk/

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