Kier Living welcomes the Government announcement to invest £2.3bn through the Housing Infrastructure Fund that will allow projects to deliver new roads and water connections to support the construction of up to 100,000 new homes.
John Anderson, executive director of Kier Living commented: “There are many sites that are technically constrained and so the fund will help to unlock potential for sites where new houses are needed the most.
“Our own New Communities Partnership (NCP) Fund, launched earlier this year, is set up specifically to support this target with an end-to-end solution for local authorities that have been restricted on land development.
“The commitment to invest of £1.7bn by 2020/21 to help accelerate construction on public land further reflects our sentiment to unlock sites and accelerate delivery through our NCP.
“It is great to see an allocation of money to support the wider mix of house tenures as Hammond commits £1.4bn for 40,000 new affordable housing. Whist we acknowledge the ongoing problem in falling home ownership there is a greater need for other forms of affordable housing for those that can’t or do not want to buy. Furthermore, this provides greater freedom for the industry to build homes of all tenure type.
“The Government plan to fund a large scale regional pilot of the Right to Buy scheme for housing association tenants, enabling more than 3,000 tenants to buy their own home, is very good news. And whilst the plan to drop the Pay to Stay scheme is largely positive, the principle of means testing occupants of our ‘affordable’ tenants who can afford more should be rebased with a slightly higher threshold to ensure that those who are just managing are protected.
“Finally, the announcement of £1bn investment into full fibre and 5G broadband can only be a positive step in addressing the UK’s connectivity problem. This is very relevant for the housebuilding industry and a vital ingredient for developing successful communities.”