Housing Need (London)

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 11:38 am on 29th June 2010.

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Photo of Tom Brake Tom Brake Liberal Democrat, Carshalton and Wallington 11:38 am, 29th June 2010

I am aware of those concerns. However, a bottom-up approach to housing is required. Again, when the Minister responds to the debate, I hope that he will explain how the proposals in the coalition programme will help to increase the supply.

I want to mention the promotion of shared-ownership schemes. Registered social landlords, such as London and Quadrant led by David Montague, are proposing imaginative schemes, such as the "up to you" programme, to make homes available for people who might not be able to pay a deposit for a property.

The situation is challenging, but we have some solutions or partial solutions to the problem of housing need in London and beyond. I should like to ask the Minister a specific question-just to get some clarity-on the decent homes programme. Although the issue is a local one, it might affect other hon. Members. The London borough of Sutton was awarded partial funding for its decent homes programme shortly before the general election. I seek confirmation that that funding remains available, and I ask about the future of the programme, which was due to last for a number of years. Tenants and the Sutton Housing Partnership are interested in what will happen to the decent homes funding.

To conclude, we are clearly in a challenging situation as far as housing need in London is concerned. It is not something that has emerged in the past couple of months but has been a long-standing problem in London, with a shortage of supply of affordable homes and, indeed, homes for sale. I hope that the coalition Government can take on that situation and can address it in the next five years.