We are working hard to ensure reforms to the planning system help maximise the delivery of new affordable homes.

The Government is fundamentally reforming the planning system. The new localist system is being introduced through the Localism Act and the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

The National Planning Policy Framework: one year on

We've produced a new briefing which looks at the shift of resposibility to Local Planning Authorities following the introduction of the National Planning Policy Framework.

National Planning Policy Framework

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) was published on 27 March 2012. It is now the only source of national policy on how the planning system should deal with housing.

We welcome the final NPPF and its potential to help create a simpler and more positive planning system that better supports ‘good growth’.

When does the NPPF come into effect?

The NPPF has applied since 27 March 2012, with some limited protection for existing local plans. For 12 months decision takers may give full weight to post-2004 local plans if there is a 'limited degree of conflict' between the plan and the NPPF. In other cases, and from March 2013, less weight will be given to existing plans.

What does the NPPF mean for housing associations?

The NPPF means that far stronger local engagement in plan making will be required. We will look at ways in which this can efficiently be achieved but local contacts with local authorities and local communities will often be the best way to achieve effective local delivery.

Housing need

The NPPF underscores the importance of local authorities objectively assessing and meeting housing need. The ‘What Households Where?’ tool has been developed in a response to a call from practitioners for practical support in assessing how many homes are needed in their areas in the context of the new housing and planning landscape.

Under the new localist planning system, it will be increasingly important for housing associations to feed into and scrutinise the development of new local plans. This tool may provide one way to support this process.

Where can I find out more information?