To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that there is a sufficient supply of housing for older people in the private rented, social and council housing sectors.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they have had with (1) housing associations, (2) private rented sector bodies, and (3) local authorities, about the availability of suitable housing for older people.
In our Housing White Paper, the Government set out proposals to do more to provide the homes we need for all in our society, including older people. We are strengthening the National Planning Policy Framework, so that local planning authorities are expected to have clear policies for addressing the housing needs of older people. Planning authorities should also include a plan policy setting out their approach to promoting Build to Rent. We will be publishing further guidance on housing for older people this summer. We have also been clear that housing will form a part of our considerations as we set out proposals in our forthcoming Green Paper to reform care and support for older people which will be published in summer 2018.
Since 2012, this Government has supported growth of the Build to Rent sector with a Build to Rent Fund (£630m) and debt guarantees to increase delivery. Over 20,000 homes have been completed since 2012 and a further 97,000 are in the pipeline (British Property Federation, Quarter 1, 2018). We would also note that greater institutional investment in the Private Rented Sector will improve standards, give tenants greater security and increase choice for all tenants.
Local authorities are responsible for ensuring that their provision of social housing meets local need, including for older people. This Government is providing a stable investment environment for councils to support the delivery of new homes, by allowing local authorities to increase rents by up to CPI +1% for 5 years from 2020. This will give councils the security and certainty they need to plan investment, and provide greater confidence about their future rental income to underpin their future house building plans. Furthermore, we will raise the Housing Revenue Account borrowing cap by a total of up to £1 billion in areas of high affordability pressure, for local authorities who are ready to start building new homes. Local authorities will be able to bid for increases in their caps between 2019-20 and 2021/22.
In addition, since 2011, we have delivered almost 30,000 supported housing units for disabled, vulnerable and older people. At Autumn Statement 2015, we announced £400 million for new specialist affordable homes for vulnerable, older or disabled people.