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Housing Session 1 – Planning for health June 29 th 2017
National Housing Policy and the challenges facing local authorities Presentation to Northamptonshire Health and Wellbeing Board Vicki Jessop FCIH Principal Housing Manager 29 th June 2017
Main Housing Duties of Local Councils • Managing Council Housing (where retained/not transferred) • Homelessness Applications/Temporary Housing – Assessing people who are homeless or threatened with Homelessness – Providing temporary accommodation and / or advice • Allocating social housing / Managing the ‘Housing Register’ – In Northants, most councils operate joint Choice Based Lettings Schemes • Improving /enforcing standards in Private Sector Housing – Licensing of houses in multiple occupation (HMOs), tackling empty homes – Disabled facilities grant, renovation grants, fuel poverty, energy efficiency • Enabling the development/building of new affordable homes – Assessing housing needs – Enabling Registered Providers to build social rent or low cost home ownership housing – Building new affordable council homes, where able to do so.
National Housing Policy • Housing White Paper : ‘Fixing our Broken Housing Market’ - Published February 2017 - Consultation Paper (consultation ran until 2 nd May). - Set out a broad range of reforms aimed at increasing the supply of new homes. - Proposed a ‘Step change’ in housing supply
White Paper – Main Proposals • Planning for the right homes in the right places - Ensure local communities decide where development should go and that every part of the country has an up-to-date, sufficiently ambitious plan. - Consult on options for a standardised approach to assessing housing requirements. - Make more brownfield and surplus public land available for homes in the right places. - Use land more efficiently for housing , encouraging higher densities where appropriate • Building homes faster - Deter unnecessary appeals in order to improve the speed and quality with which planning cases are handled. Boost local authority capacity and capability to deliver. - Co-ordinate government investment through the targeting of the £ 2. 3 bn Housing Infrastructure Fund at the areas of greatest need. - Grow the construction workforce to address existing skills shortages.
White Paper – Main Proposals (continued) • Diversifying the market - Encourage small and medium-sized builders to grow, - Promote Custom and Self Build housing (Right to Build). - Build more homes for private rent and encourage more institutional investors. - Ensure family-friendly tenancies of three or more years are available. - Support housing associations and local authorities to build more homes • Helping people now - Support people to buy their own home through Help to Buy and Starter Homes. - Invest an extra £ 1. 4 bn into the Affordable Homes Programme. - Make renting fairer for tenants. - Produce guidance on how to meet the housing needs of older and disabled people. - Introduce legislation to prevent homelessness (Homelessness Reduction Act 2017)
Next Steps - Government Housing Policy • Queens Speech 21 st June 2017 Included commitments to : - ‘Promote fairness and transparency in the housing market. ’ - ‘Ensure more homes are built. ’
Current challenges • Welfare Reform – Income cap (impact on families abilities to pay rent) – Housing benefit cap (under 35’s shared room rate only) – Housing Benefit rates (LHA) below private rents levels • Increasing Homelessness – Leading to an increased need for temporary accommodation, increased use of B&B – National Increase in Private Sector evictions (now the main reason for homelessness) • Private Sector Housing – Extension of mandatory licensing of HMO’s – Growth of the private rented sector = increased role for Local authorities
Source: https: //www. gov. uk/government/statistical-data-sets/live-tables-on-homelessness
Thank you for listening Sylvanus house, Queensway, Wellingborough (Wellingborough Homes 2017)