Housing: David Cameron vows to 'get Britain building'

 

David Cameron: ''We are determined...to get the market moving''

Buyers of new homes will be able to borrow up to 95% of their value as part of plans the government says will help get "Britain building again".

The mortgage indemnity scheme, in which the government will underwrite part of the risk to lenders, could help up to 100,000 people in England.

It is part of a wider strategy to build more homes and boost home ownership.

Labour said it was "too little, too late" and did not compensate for earlier cuts to housing budgets.

Building more homes is one of the government's economic priorities, with the number of new ones being built at its lowest level since World War II, and with rents and prices remaining high while mortgage lending is restricted.

Just 121,200 new homes were made available in 2010-11, half of what ministers say are needed.

At the heart of the coalition's approach is an indemnity scheme which will enable lenders to provide mortgages of up to 95% of the value of newly built homes to would-be buyers - most of whom are expected to be first-time purchasers - supported by government guarantees.

KEY PROPOSALS

  • Mortgages of up to 95% of the value of new homes to be offered with government underwriting part of the risk
  • £400m public fund to help developers "unblock" stalled housing schemes
  • Largest discounts for social tenants wanting to own their properties under right to buy
  • More public sector land to be made available for building
  • Planning obligations on stalled projects reviewed
  • Up to £150m to help bring empty housing back into use
  • Consult on "pay to stay" so households with high salaries pay market rents

Addressing the CBI's annual conference in London, Mr Cameron said it was not his aim to create "another borrowing boom" but to help the many people who could not afford huge deposits needed to buy properties.

"When first-time buyers on a good salary cannot get a reasonable mortgage, the whole market grinds to a halt," he said.

"And that ricochets around the economy, affecting builders, retailers, plumbers - all the people that depend on a housing market that is moving.

"If we don't do something like this we are not going to get this vital market moving... We will restart the housing market and get Britain building again."

Ministers will also intervene to kick-start some of 130,000 building projects which are estimated to have been approved but delayed by funding problems.

New homes

A "Get Britain Building Fund" will see developers compete for a slice of £400m to take forward "shovel-ready" projects which meet the right criteria, among them a commitment to affordable homes.

This initiative will begin in July and aims to lead to 16,000 new homes being built, providing work for 32,000 people.

It is hoped that about 450,000 mainly affordable homes will be built by 2015, many of them on publicly-owned brownfield sites, although the government is not setting any specific targets.

Other parts of the strategy include empty properties being brought back into residential use and new providers being encouraged to enter the social housing market.

Council house sales

To help potential buyers, tenants of social housing are to get the right to buy their home - a hallmark of the Thatcher government in the 1980s - for as little as half the market price.

The money will then be used to build more affordable housing, with ministers saying they will build a new home for every home sold off in this way.

The House Builders Federation said the lack of mortgage availability since the 2008 banking crisis had been "the biggest constraint" on new homes and the indemnity scheme would help to address this.

"In recent years, many people have been unable to realise their dreams of buying a home because of the huge deposits required by lenders," its executive chairman Stewart Baseley said.

"This scheme will be allow people to buy their new home on realistic terms and help, in particular, hard-pressed first time buyers."

'Dangers'

Labour say the government have failed to get a grip on the problem in its first year in power and the situation has got worse in some parts of the country.

"These measures are too little, too late from the man who was responsible for choking off growth in the British economy when he came to power," opposition leader Ed Miliband said.

Single mum Kylie Bennett has recently split up with her partner and urgently needs somewhere to live

"Putting back just 10% of the £4bn he cut from housing investment last year will convince no-one he is serious about getting growth back into the economy."

The opposition have urged ministers to levy a £2bn tax on bank bonuses to pay for 25,000 new homes and 100,000 new construction jobs for young people, as part of their five-point plan for boosting growth.

And housing charity Shelter said the government's plans to move more people from social housing into the private rented sector could increase homelessness.

"There is a real danger that as rents go up that welfare bills go up as well," its chief executive Campbell Robb said. "There needs to be much more alignment between housing and welfare."

Other measures in the strategy include a pledge to consult on 'Pay to Stay' proposals where social tenants on high salaries will pay up to market rents if they want to continue living in taxpayer-subsidised homes.

Ministers also say there will be tougher action to tackle "the outrage" of 50,000 unlawfully occupied social homes.

 

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  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1228.

    1221.Jay. You noticed? I went to London to the theatre (from the provinces) and dropped by St Paul's to see the tent people this w/e. Their message is clear but not clearly stated. We need Leaders who represent the majority middle class in the UK. New Labour and the Cammy bunch are NOT fit for purpose and only represent people like Abramovich and Philip 'no pay no tax' Green.

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 1227.

    Oh dear, still trying to roast that old chestnut again. What we need is fewer people and if they must build tomorrows slums to sell at silly£, at least make sure that British people get the bloody jobs.
    Let's give up now and just be Europes biggest off shore Airport. We have plenty of concrete & Tarmac & more to come it seems++debt.
    Quality of life, what's that? It's not lack of food etc we lack

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1226.

    In the US, wasn't what the UK government now plans to underwrite called the'sub-prime mortgage market'?

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1225.

    Where's little Nicky Clegg these days, never seem to see him making any contribution to anything.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1224.

    I think everyone thats been round the block a few times will say the same it's not a case of having a clue about running the country sadly it's about looking after yourself and line your own pockets when you become an MP.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1223.

    1221.Jay

    I don't think anyone has a clue how to run a country, it's all just luck.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1222.

    1217.CGF. House prices should be 'allowed' to stagnate/stay neutral or perhaps drop back slightly for a while until debt has been repaid by the nation. 'For a while'? Is that the thirty year while? Isn't national debt still rising? More importantly, house prices are now, finally beginning the inevitable fall as redundancies begin to take effect and 'fire sales' take place. Like in the US?

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 1221.

    Oh dear, after the last bunch of incompetent nitwits I hoped we would get a government which actually has a clue about how to run a country. Sadly we get Blair-lite. As a middle class person working in the city of london I'm becoming more convinced we need a "european spring" where upper class twits are no longer running this country. Yes that includes Clegg/Milliband and DC.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1220.

    1198. WingNut
    "Good business."
    ~~
    Perfect
    Reply.
    Incicive,
    Cogent but
    Krap.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 1219.

    1217 CGF "I am an Estate Agent"

    Ok everyone in your best Pantomime voice BOO HISSS BOOO HISSSSSS BBBBOOOOOOOO HHHHIIIISSSSSSSSSS

  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 1218.

    The government is creating a huge problem for itself.

    They will do everything to keep mortgage interest rates low and house prices high because they know that the banks are stuffed full of potentially toxic mortgages (Northern Rock has £21bn)

    This is all about maintaining rich investors profits at the expense of the public and is yet another example of the poor subsidising the rich.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 1217.

    I am an Estate Agent, the very last thing this government should be doing is encouraging more, subsidised debt by loaning or giving house buyers cash. House prices should be allowed to stagnate/stay neutral or perhaps drop back slightly for a while until debt has been repaid by the nation. Extending the stamp duty exemption for first timers would be enough for now

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 1216.

    1209. Ben
    "what country is so stupid to base it's economic success on a house price??"
    ~~
    This one is apparently. By the way you'll never lose money underestimating the intelligence of the English.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1215.

    For many low paid citizens in the 'black' economy the most lucrative option is to use the benefit system to get housing benefit to make their housing 'affordable'. This can then be rented out on the 'black' to give them holiday money when they leave England for sunnier climes during the cold dark winter. They don't want Cammy's help. Too busy laughing.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1214.

    Cameron says well paid people cannot afford a deposit for a new home. Then perhaps they need to be taught lessons in thrift,you know, going without whilst putting something away for the future.
    Much better for them in the long run than handing out government subsidies that the taxpayer can ill afford.

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 1213.

    the professionals then keep motivated and keep there skills fresh. this is a simple idea to get rented accommodation for the needy. simpless!!

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 1212.

    Britain's biggest housebuilders privately lobbied cabinet ministers to secure a significant relaxation of the planning system.

    Our countryside will be concreted over from Dover to Leeds and a few will profit to retire overseas.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 1211.

    Why do they think first time buyers are so desperate to get on the market they would take up a 95% mortgage? Do they think we are really that dull witted with money? All this incentive does is maintain the unsustainable housing bubble for a little while longer. How about 20% first time buyer discount on new builds on the condition the property is not sold for 6-8 years? Or is that too logical?

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 1210.

    A home is for your family whether you own it or not it does not matter, I have done both and have enjoyed my time equally as much. The UK is obsessed with owning a house, which is just one form of investment and has risks attached. There are a lot of very well off people at the moment renting a home and investing elsewhere, people need to be educated on the difference of a house and a home !!!!!

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 1209.

    100's of thousands of empty houses around the country. Most of which are likely to be up north where there is no work. Get the jobs created somewhere other than London and the southeast and we won't need more built in the SE. Where's the work for the north of YOUR country mr Cameron? England is bigger than London, and what country is so stupid to base it's economic success on a house price??

 

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