Building on the stimulus package: A plan for growth through housing
28 February 2013
Housing drives growth with a speed and effectiveness few industries can match. It has a crucial role to play in the country’s economic recovery. The statistics speak for themselves. Every affordable home built generates an additional £108,000 in the economy and creates 2.3 jobs. That represents one of the highest multiplier effects of any industry – a greater economic impact than investment in health, offshore wind or financial services.
The Federation therefore welcomed last September’s housing stimulus package with its focus on driving growth through housing. The Government’s £10 billion financial guarantees, together with the extra £300 million for affordable and empty homes, could make a real difference.
However, to drive growth and deliver the homes we need, more can be done. The Budget provides an invaluable opportunity to build on the stimulus package and fill in the missing pieces of the puzzle.
In this submission we outline our plan for how this can be achieved. Taken together, these measures will support the delivery of new homes at scale and at minimal cost to the public purse. They will create thousands of jobs across the country and drive the growth we need. The Government should:
- Ensure the rapid release of small sites for development
- Provide certainty beyond 2015
- Reduce VAT on services to housing associations
- Remove tax penalties for investing in new, affordable homes
- Raise the local authority debt cap
- Review the impact of welfare reform before considering any further benefit cuts
Download our submissions to HM Treasury: