View more on these topics

Planning system to be overhauled to boost housebuilding


The Government has launched an overhaul of the National Planning Policy Framework in a bid to improve the rate at which new homes are built.

Local authorities will have a new housing delivery test, which will focus on pushing up the number of homes actually delivered in their area, while the Government promises developers will be “held to account” over delivering affordable housing.

Authorities will also be given more freedom to use brownfield land to build homes of a greater density.

Specific sites will be developed for first-time buyers, build-to-rent homes with “family-friendly tenancies”, guaranteed affordable homes for key workers and adapted homes for older people.

A new standardised approach to assessing housing need in different areas will be introduced, which the government claims will ensure developers know what is expected of them, while new quality standards are also to be introduced.

Housing secretary Sajid Javid says that an entire generation is being locked out of the housing market and reforming the planning system is a crucial step towards addressing that.

He adds: “This Government is determined to fix the broken housing market and restore the dream of home ownership for a new generation. There is no silver bullet to this problem but we’re re-writing the rules on planning so we can take action on all fronts.”

Great Marlborough Estate co-founder Dean Clifford argues the government is falling for the “myth” of land banking by developers, suggesting that delays in actually starting development are caused by a host of reasons out of a firm’s hands.

He adds: “The government seems to have continued the merry-go-round of changes which require constant recalibrations or the wider planning system.”

Former Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors residential chairman Jeremy Lead says solving the housing crisis is not just about building more homes.

He continues: ‘There is a whole range of other issues that need to be addressed if we are going to make a real difference to supply and the cost of buying as well as renting. In particular, attention needs to be paid to lending, planning, enforcement and better use of existing resources, especially local authority land.”



Government pays out £15.8m to help local housebuilding

The Government has paid out the first £15.8m of a £25m fund to help speed up planning decisions and help deliver quality new homes. The Planning Delivery Fund was announced by former housing minister Alok Sharma last December. The first wave of funding has now been awarded to help councils process more applications, implement new reforms […]


Government gives £25m to help local authority housebuilding

The Government has launched a £25m fund to help local authorities deliver new homes.  Housing and planning minister Alok Sharma today opened the Planning Delivery Fund. The Government has opened up £11m of the cash at first to help local councils deliver quality homes. A DCLG statement says: “The fund is aimed at encouraging more […]


Opinion: Opportunities for brokers in 2018

  With 2018 in full swing, brokers should seize every opportunity that comes their way. The remortgage rush March 2018 is set to see a spike in buy-to-let mortgage activity as savvy borrowers, who rushed to complete their mortgage applications ahead of the Stamp Duty surcharge that came into effect in April 2016, will be […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up