Starter homes slammed by 93% of councils

Starter homes slammed by 93% of councils

A new online survey, which was sent to Council Leaders, Heads of Planning, Heads of Housing and Heads of Finance in local authorities across England in February 2016, has revealed that just 7% of councils believe that Starter Homes will address the need for affordable housing.

In the same survey, 80% responded by saying that they don't believe Starter Homes should be classified as affordable housing.

Over two thirds of those polled anticipate that they will be building less social and affordable housing as a result of the Government's plans to reduce social rents by 1% a year for the next four years.

96% of councils described their need for affordable homes as severe or moderate.

Nine out of 10 councils are concerned that the extension of the Right to Buy to housing association tenants will mean that there will be less socially-rented homes available.

53% of respondents are from Conservative controlled councils.

Local councils, of all political parties, have agreed that the Government's Starter Homes policy will hinder rather than help to tackle the growing need for genuinely affordable housing in England. They have also raised concerns about the impacts of the Government's plans to reduce social rents by 1% a year for the next four years and the extension of the Right to Buy to housing association tenants.

With the House of Lords scrutinising key measures in the Housing and Planning Bill this week the Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA) and Association for Public Sector Excellence (APSE) have published the results of a survey of local government which reveals that just 7% of councils think that Starter Homes, which are designed to help the under 40s, will help to address the need for affordable housing.


Kate Henderson, Chief Executive of the TCPA said: “Low cost homeownership, such as starter homes, may help some people get a first step on the housing ladder, but as the survey of council's highlights this will not address the need for genuinely affordable homes. We need a housing strategy for the nation that provides decent homes for everyone in society, including those most in need in the current housing crisis.

Our survey has revealed that four out of five councils do not think starter homes should be classified as affordable housing because they are simply not affordable for essential low-paid workers – whose employment underpins an economy on which we all depend – or for many people on average incomes.”

Over two thirds of councils (69%) stated that the Government's proposal to reduce social rents by 1% a year for the next four years has negatively impacted plans for new social and affordable housing, with only 3% saying that they plan to build more social and affordable homes as a result.

Almost three fifths of councils described their need for more affordable housing as severe and 37% as moderate, and 89% of respondents think that the extension of Right to Buy will lead to less housing available for social rent, with only one council thinking that it would be beneficial.

Paul O'Brien, Chief Executive of APSE said: “What is clear from these survey results is that the headlong rush to extend Right to Buy to housing associations is an ill-thought out measure which enjoys little support, and this is reflected across the different political parties at a local level. With Nine out of 10 councils genuinely concerned that the extension of the Right to Buy to housing association tenants will further diminish the already short supply of socially-rented homes, available in their local communities, we say to Government now is the right time to listen on Right to Buy.”

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Latest Comments

MBM Homelets
MBM Homelets 23 Mar 2017

Although this is a very positive step, there is little or no guarantee of the standard of workmanship employed by the tenants. We have had experience of a professionally decorated property being ' painted'...

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ajay
ajay 21 Mar 2017

How is the "robust evidence" looking now?

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NathanG
NathanG 20 Mar 2017

I've been watching the series so far and am completely baffled by the cases that were presented. Though, I don't think that we can protect ourselves from every scam possible - it will just make the scammers...

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Landlady14
Landlady14 01 Mar 2017

You would think so Niraj Shah! My experience only proves that there are varying qualitiers of professional in all aspects of property letting. None of the ones I have dealt with, from letting agents to...

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Mark
Mark 01 Mar 2017

Thanks for this article. Hopefully one day everybody's lifestyle will be eco-sustainable.

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Ben Taylor
Ben Taylor 28 Feb 2017

I was convinced that London was the most expensive!

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Alan Read
Alan Read 28 Feb 2017

Australia are leading the way in this I think. The trouble with Britain is we don't get enough sun to make use of solar power.

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James Powell
James Powell 27 Feb 2017

This is a very good news.

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DanHumphreys
DanHumphreys 27 Feb 2017

It sounds like a good idea. Anything to help the younger generation get a foothold.

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Matt
Matt 20 Feb 2017

Is this fake news?

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Matthew Hollywood
Matthew Hollywood 07 Feb 2017

Matthew Hollywood - Director Mishon Mackay Land & New Homes - Brighton The shortage of New Homes is in part effected by the lack of land sales. Land sales are held back because there is a disparity between...

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CommercialTrust
CommercialTrust 30 Jan 2017

Hi Graham, Would be interesting to see the above figure calculated against an investment via a Lt Company /SPV structure and if the investor found themselves pushed in to the higher tax bracket. Mortgage...

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