Affordable housing: Is it the real solution
Last month the government announced that it would be looking to bring more people onto the housing ladder and out of the market for rental homes in the UK simply by making it more affordable for them to buy properties for sale which have been previously council homes.
However, one of the bigger notions which backed up this campaign by showing how it will benefit the country in the long run was the way in which the ruling parties claimed that they will be looking to increase home ownership elsewhere by building more affordable homes. Announcing the revamped right to buy scheme, housing minister Grant Shapps pledged to build an affordable house for every former council home sold under the project
But how well will this scheme work, and can it provide better housing across the UK and help more first-time buyers in particular onto the housing ladder?
According to a recent report, the government has so far failed to deliver enough homes at an affordable level since coming to power, meaning that it will need to work harder under right to buy in order to cut housing issues.
The National Housing Federation, Shelter and the Chartered Institute of Housing released a study earlier this month which said that a lack of homes at good prices means that there is still a greater demand for rental homes in the UK, driving rental prices ever higher across the country.
It said that there had been a small increase in the number of new homes built over the last few years, but highlighted the fact that despite pledges from when the government came to power, there has still been a reduction of 40 per cent built from the peak of house building in 2007.
Kay Boycott, director of communications, policy and campaigns at Shelter, said: "Every day we see families up and down the country whose lives are being torn apart by the shortage of affordable homes. This government has had two years to start delivering on housing, yet this report paints a pretty bleak picture of its current record on housing in all its forms."
This means that government still needs to be doing far more to make housing more affordable in the UK property market.
The notion was also recently backed by Martin Collett, operations director at the English Rural Housing Association, who said that those in rural areas in particular need to have more affordable houses provided to ensure that they can even afford to live where they work.
"There are households where perhaps the current rental market isn't right for them and they aspire to ownership, but because of the lack of access to an affordable home ownership product, they are then forced to move to urban areas and commute to support their family, to visit friends and to work," he said.
However, the government has taken steps to rectify the issue for homeowners, so it could be the case that there could be more homes become available over the following months and years.
When announcing its new budget, the government announced that it would be increasing the funding available to those who are struggling to finish with the building of projects in the UK which have stalled thanks to financial issues. George Osborne, chancellor, said that £150 million to make it possible would be made available in coming years.
It now remains to be seen if its ambitious plans for boosting home ownership will be successful over the next few years.
Posted at 05:00 29/06/2012