Councils will be able to approve planning applications more quickly under new measures to “remove bureaucracy” from the system, the Communities Secretary will announce today at CIH’s Housing 2019 conference.
The Secretary of State is also said to have instructed Homes England to renegotiate Help to Buy contracts to explicitly rule out the selling of new leasehold houses, other than in exceptional circumstances, to protect new home buyers from “unscrupulous” charges.
The announcements come as part of a package of new measures as the government strives to deliver 300,000 new homes a year by the mid-2020s.
Brokenshire says that the new Accelerated Planning Green Paper, to be published later this year as confirmed by the Prime Minister yesterday, will “dramatically improve” the planning process for families wanting to extend their properties.
The Communities Secretary is expected to address delegates at the conference in Manchester later today.
He is due to say: “Housing supply is at the highest level for all but one of the last 31 years – with more than 222,000 new homes delivered at the last count.
“We need to build on the strides we have made so far to increase supply to 300,000 new homes a year – which means building faster and reducing planning delays.
“That’s why we’re publishing an Accelerated Planning Green Paper to look at how greater capacity and capability within local planning authorities, better performance management and procedural improvements can accelerate the end-to-end planning process for all.”
New measures will also be taken to prevent developers selling leasehold houses through the Help to Buy Scheme as confirmed by Brokenshire – preventing taxpayers’ money from directly supporting the unjustified sale of leasehold houses.
He is also due to announce a new Homes Ombudsman announced to protect rights of homebuyers and hold builders to account.