Social Rented Housing: Overcrowding

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 14th February 2019.

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Photo of Steve McCabe Steve McCabe Labour, Birmingham, Selly Oak

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what recent steps he has taken to tackle overcrowding in social housing.

Photo of Kit Malthouse Kit Malthouse Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government)

The Government is committed to increasing the supply of social housing to provides homes for those who need them.

We have made £9 billion available through the Affordable Homes Programme to March 2022 to deliver 250,000 new affordable homes, including for social rent. Since 2010, we have delivered over 407,000 new affordable homes, including over 293,000 affordable homes for rent.

On 18 September we announced an additional £2 billion of long-term funding certainty for housing associations to 28/29. This extra funding will deliver more affordable homes and stimulate the sector’s wider building ambitions, through strategic partnerships.

Further, by abolishing the Housing Revenue Account borrowing cap at Autumn Budget, we have given councils the tools they need to deliver a new generation of council housing. Local authorities are now free to borrow to build new council homes in line with the Prudential Code, and we expect them to double building to deliver up to 10,000 homes per year by 21/22.

Through the Localism Act 2011 we have retained the statutory ‘reasonable preference’ requirements that ensure that social housing is prioritised for those in housing need, including people who are in overcrowded housing.

In the Social Housing Green Paper we set out our intention to undertake an evidence gathering exercise to help us understand how the allocations system is working and whether it is striking the right balance between fairness, support and aspiration.

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