MPs call for 90,000 new social homes every year

By Laura Sharman | 27 July 2020

An extra £10bn in grant funding is required to deliver the number of social homes needed to meet demand, MPs have said today.

A new report from the Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee estimates at least 90,000 new social homes are needed every year. However, it says that existing funding mechanisms mean that local authorities and social housing providers are ‘at the limit’ of what they can deliver.

While the report finds around £10bn extra grant funding would be required to deliver this number of homes, it argues that wider reforms could significantly reduce the cost.

This includes reforming land value capture, using public land for social housing, and redistributing expenditure from existing budgets.

Committee chair, Clive Betts, said: ‘We need at least 90,000 new homes a year to get to the level of social housing we need, but this is achievable. We believe this target can be reached in five years, but only if the Government gives providers sufficient financial backing and reforms the wider landscape that social housing providers operate in.

’They must ensure that the money is there to build, that land is available to build on and allow flexibility to buy surplus housing where it is not needed in the private sector.

The system must ensure that any housing sold via Right to Buy is replaced like-for-like, and that local authorities are allowed to retain all the receipts produced to enable them to achieve this.’

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