Housing announcements and the interim report from the Build Out Review.
14 March 2018
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, gave his Spring Statement to Parliament on Tuesday 13 March.
In keeping with the Chancellor’s wish to move to just one fiscal event a year in the autumn, this was a heavily pared down version of what we have come to expect from a budget and no tax changes were announced.
The Chancellor recommitted the Government to tackling the housing crisis. Announcements of particular interest to our members included an extra £100m to help deliver more homes in the West Midlands, which can help to address the region’s shortfall of more than 45,000 homes over the next five years. There is a commitment from the Government to work with housing associations on new ways to finance and build affordable housing in the region, including the development company we have been supporting members to establish.
We also welcome the additional £1.67bn that will be made available for affordable homes in London.
The interim report of the Build Out Review from Sir Oliver Letwin was also published alongside the Spring Statement – focusing on how to speed up delivery. In our contributions to the Review we have emphasised how increasing the number of affordable homes is a key part of building faster, so it is pleasing to see this recognised.
But the crucial part of the puzzle remains land. Housing associations are continuing our call for more investment and for more land to be brought forward at lower prices.