Since 2010, we have delivered 357,000 affordable homes including, as I said earlier, about 128,000 homes for social rent. As I also said previously, we are providing £9 billion for the affordable homes programme, a £1 billion lift in HRA borrowing caps, and rent certainty for social landlords. That will help the sector to build more affordable homes, including social rented homes.
Shelter has found that in the past year developers have used viability assessments to wriggle out of building more than 2,500 affordable homes to rent or buy, including 200 in Bristol. Will the Minister take steps to remove that loophole when he rewrites the national planning policy framework next year by removing the reference to the need for a competitive return?
One of the key issues in our consultation on local housing needs, which closed on
After 13 years of Labour MPs in Gloucester in which not a single new social housing unit was built, we now have built some new social housing, but we want to do much more through a master plan involving the Government’s estate regeneration programme. Will my hon. Friend confirm that money may be available through the new national productivity investment fund to help to bridge any potential funding gap caused by low values?
I commend my hon. Friend for the work that he is doing in his constituency to encourage more building of homes, including social homes, and I am delighted by the progress that is being made in estate regeneration. My hon. Friend’s constituency has received £1.25 million of capacity funding. More detailed eligibility criteria for the national productivity investment fund will be announced in due course, and I shall be happy to meet my hon. Friend to discuss the matter further.
Of course we support the right to buy. It has meant that people have been able to own homes, which I think is incredibly important. We are making more money available for affordable homes but, as I have said, there will be at least £44 billion over the next five years so that more homes can be built. We have a housing crisis now because not enough homes were built under the last Government.
If we are to meet the demand for more affordable homes, there needs to be a partnership between the private and public sectors. What actions can the Minister take to ensure that local authorities work with both sectors in order to deliver the homes that we need?
In the Budget, my right hon. Friend the Chancellor set out the planning reforms that we are looking at, which will have an impact on local authorities bringing forward more sites more quickly for building. We have also announced an uplift of up to £1 billion for the housing revenue account, which will make a substantial difference.