“New communities secretary Eric Pickles and housing minister Grant Shapps have take decisive action by scrapping HIPs that will be a boost to the housing market and help show that we’re back in business. It’s evidence of them keeping their pre-election promise and now we need to see other promises kept. We need other barmy legislation brought in by Labour – like the crackdown on shared housing – to be undone.”
Shapps, along with Prime Minister David Cameron and environment secretary Caroline Spelman all signed a motion calling for the shared housing crackdown to be scrapped earlier this year.
Labour was massively criticised for changing rules around homes in multiple occupation (HMOs) where landlords have more than three people sharing. Under the changes – which were universally opposed by property groups and the National Union of Students – councils would have powers to stop landlords renting new homes to more than three unrelated people.
Shapps previously commented: "While councils need powers to tackle the excesses of slum landlords, this is a state sledgehammer to crack a nut. Labour have already kicked the housing market by imposing the red tape of Home Information Packs. Now they want to cripple the fragile market with even more regulation. Tenants will lose out, as these new costs will reduce the supply of housing and drive up rents.”
The BPF also repeated its call for a large-scale rented sector. The long running campaign to get tax breaks for institutions and pension funds has been backed by the Homes and Communities Agency with various big names lining up to develop schemes.
Andrew Teacher added: “It’s vital we look at real solutions to housing supply as its clear there is no more public money to bail out housing.We need to bring vital new investment into housing, and pension and life funds offer a pool of money that is relatively untapped. This means looking at the barriers to entry for such investors and if these can be overcome, then we will all be better off.”
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