In response to today's Spending Review, Kate Henderson, Chief Executive of the National Housing Federation, said:
"The government's focus on housebuilding and levelling-up came through strongly in today's spending review. The £7.1bn National Home Building Fund, alongside the £12bn announced through the Affordable Homes Programme, will help reduce the current shortfall of 4m homes, as well as stimulating the economy and creating local jobs. It's also encouraging to see new money for retrofitting social homes which is vital to helping us achieve our environmental targets.
"We welcome additional investment to help reduce rough sleeping, and the commitment that housing benefit will remain at current rates, ensuring people on low incomes can better afford private rents. However we are concerned that there is still no confirmation that the £20 a week top up for universal credit will continue past March 2021, with many dependent on this income.
"Whilst funding for the building safety regulator is welcome, it is disappointing that the government has not taken this opportunity to provide up front funding for the removal of cladding to ensure that buildings can be made safe as quickly as possible."