I’m sure many of you have heard about the new legislation regarding new homes.
The building of new homes in the United Kingdom affects us all in different ways and it’s useful to understand the legislation so that you can determine just how it will affect you and your community and whether or not you have a say in these changes.
There are four main areas that will affect residents this year:
Apparently we need to build around 300 000 new homes a year to keep up with demand and population growth.
At the moment, only 100 000 new homes are built each year leaving a deficit in densely populated areas like London. The issue with building new homes is that often, those with the money to buy them prefer to buy a ‘ready made’ home and land prices are increasing. Meanwhile, developers are sitting on land with planning permission while they wait for it to increase in value so that they can be assured of a maximum profit. Stats show that over 400 000 plots have planning permission already. That would be a good start on catching up with the 300 000 new homes needed this year.
2. Building in the countryside
This is a big issue for the British as countryside and greenbelt areas are sacrosanct but with the demand for more housing in the offing Nick Boles – our Planning Minister – has vowed to release ‘countryside’ for building. Communities are worried that greenfield sites will be built on and brownfield sites will be ‘banked’ by councils to attract commercial development from investors to bring work to an area.
3. What about the already empty houses?
Are you wondering what’s happening to the 78 000 or so empty houses in the North of England and Scotland? Surely they’ll be used to increase stock in those areas that need more housing? We’d all like to think so but will developers see this as an opportunity or as a detraction from new homes developments and bigger profits?
You can have a voice about the above mentioned points and about granting planning permission in your community.
Contact your local council about joining in when new developments are being discussed and raise interest from your neighbourhood. If a community allows the building of new homes in their area, they could stand to get 25% of the Community Infrestructure Levy that developers will have to pay. This is to be used for the betterment of the community which could mean a new community hall or youth club in the area! Worth looking into.
If you’re interested in making a difference in your communities housing and development plans just look up ‘government communities’ in Google or go to http://www.planningportal.gov.uk/inyourarea/neighbourhood/