"A stable coalition Government will provide certainty as we look to tackle the country’s housing crisis. Appointing Shapps is a sensible move that will provide consistency in the home building industry’s discussions with the Government as the Conservatives’ pre-election proposals are put into effect. Greg Clarke’s position will also be vital as the Government pushes through its radical changes to the Planning System. A manageable transition plan will be essential if we are to avoid a period of uncertainty and delay and a hiatus in housing delivery.
Baseley continued: "The Conservatives have stated many times that they are committed to building more homes. The Government’s task now is to develop a policy framework that will deliver on this promise, working closely with the home building industry.
"Such a framework must include, as a matter of urgency, steps to tackle the lack of mortgage availability, particularly for first-time buyers, and increase the supply of viable developable land, both of which are currently constraining housing supply. It must also find a way of reducing to realistic levels the regulatory costs that have rocketed over the past decade.
"It must not include any proposals to introduce VAT on new homes, a pre-election idea floated by the Lib Dems and subsequently dismissed by the Conservatives, which would be a significant step backwards and would penalise first-time buyers and result in even fewer homes being built.”
The country currently has a housing shortage approaching a million homes, with five million people on local authority waiting lists, and home building has fallen to the lowest peacetime levels since the early 1920s.
There are a host of other issues the new CLG team quickly needs to get to grips with, including how to maintain vital public funding for affordable housing and the zero carbon agenda.
HBF has already written to the new Ministerial team to outline what it feels should the new Governments ‘Day 1’ housing and planning priorities.
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