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Opinion: Councils need to stop funding housing associations

27th January 2015

Last week, councillor Mike Iszatt criticised Broxbourne Borough Council’s funding of housing associations. Here, cllr Iszatt outlines his concerns about the funding of HAs and the entry criteria for housing waiting lists… In the 80s, Margaret Thatcher started making us a nation of homeowners. Is it the government’s intention that we became a nation of housing association tenants? With 40% of larger developments having to be made up of affordable homes in our borough, it certainl...

Over 100 ‘affordable’ homes coming to Peckham

27th January 2015

A ground breaking event has marked the start of a development that will bring 300 new homes to Peckham – over a third of which will be affordable. Southwark Council is working with its development partner Notting Hill Housing Trust to build 333 homes on the site of the old Wooddene block on the Acorn Estate along Queens Road. The mixed-tenure scheme, which was given planning consent in July 2013, will include 54 homes for social rent; 108 for market rent; 63 for shared ownership (section 106); 3...

London's residential land prices up 24%

27th January 2015

Residential land values in prime central London climbed by 6.4% in 2014's quarter 4, taking the annual rise to a massive 24%. According to Knight Frank LLP's latest figures, 2014's strong price growth means that the cost of land in central London has soared by an astonishing 48% since September 2011. However, Knight Frank's Residential Development Land Index reveals that, though prices may have shot through the roof in the capital, the growth in land values across England and Wales slowed in 2014's...

Right to buy set to have ‘devastating’ impact on London’s council home stocks

27th January 2015

The amount of homes sold off under the controversial right to buy scheme in London is set to far outstrip the number of new council homes built in the city, a new report has revealed. According to London Assembly Labour housing spokesperson Tom Copley’s study, the capital’s councils predict they will lose 1.5 council homes for every 1 they build under the government’s 'reinvigorated' RTB over the coming decade. Copley said that his ‘Out of Stock’ report found a “devastating scale of reduction in council housing stock” and called for local authorities to be given new powers to properly in...

Green belt uncertainty fuelling UK’s housing crisis

26th January 2015

Public confusion over the UK's green belt is helping to fuel the country's desperate housing crisis, a planning and development consultancy has warned. According to Iceni's research, over half of the population oppose building on the green belt - but 60% of Brits cannot even correctly define what it actually is. Meanwhile, the ComRes-conducted poll found that Nearly 90% of the population have no knowledge of, or do not understand, the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). The online survey of over 2...

New Glasgow homes emerge on former tower block site

26th January 2015

Tenants and councillors have checked up on the progress of 116 new homes that are being built on the site of two demolished Glasgow tower blocks. The new properties, which are being built by social landlord Glasgow Housing Association (GHA), are being constructed alongside a major upgrade of four remaining tower blocks at Kingsway Court. The £10.5 million development is made up of 102 flats and 14 houses, with seven of the flats designed to wheelchair standard, and is expected to be finished i...

North West’s social housing output dwarfs rest of UK

23rd January 2015

England’s North West is putting the rest of the UK to shame by dwarfing other regions’ social home-building output, new figures have revealed. Barbour ABI, which is a chosen provider of construction data to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and the government, has released new data revealing that more than 18,000 new build social homes have been given the go ahead for developer in the North West since 2012 – with an estimated spend of £1.8 billion. In stark contrast, ...

Opinion: Spreading the word on low cost homeownership in London

23rd January 2015

By Colin McLennon, head of home ownership services, Metropolitan. Colin oversees Homematch, a free service which offers priced-out Londoners the opportunity to find out more about, and apply for, homes to own and rent affordably from a range of housing providers working in the capital.  He also manages a number of teams which provide customer service on behalf of a number of large, grant-funded programmes, such as the National Post Sales Agent Service. With Christmas now a distant memory and the winte...

Friday Feud: Right to buy – the disease that just won’t go away

23rd January 2015

24dash reporter Max Salsbury continues to bang on about right to buy... So, the social housing privatisation debate rumbles on – though it has changed its form. With the fireworks that followed the infamous Policy Exchange report that called for the creation of ‘free housing associations’ appearing to fizzle out a little, this week brought news of a Tory plan to extend the catastrophic right to buy to housing association properties. A little background. Under current rules, council tenants who have been ...

Opinion: Record-breaking bond will help deliver new homes and improved services

22nd January 2015

By Paul Rickard, finance director, Paragon Community Housing Group Paragon is proud to be the first housing association to issue a bond in 2015. The rate of 3.625% significantly improves on the lowest rate for this type of bond, beating the previous record of 4%. Over 28 financial institutions participated in the bond issue, with offers peaking at over £700 million. The tension and excitement at Paragon’s office was palpable when the bond was issued, and staff from across the busine...