CIH responds to Liberal Democrat manifesto
Commenting on the publication of the Liberal Democrat party’s General Election manifesto, Chartered Institute of Housing chief executive Terrie Alafat CBE said: "We need a swift and significant increase in the number of new homes being built to get to grips with our national housing crisis, so it’s encouraging to see the Liberal Democrats setting an ambitious target for house building and proposing to directly commission new homes. Historically we have only built anywhere near the number of homes we need when the public sector has been directly involved in building.
"But it’s not just about building more homes, it’s about building more affordable homes for people on lower incomes. We need more homes across the spectrum – for home ownership, for private and social rent, and for shared ownership – but we believe more investment is urgently needed in affordable homes to rent. So the Liberal Democrats’ commitment to help councils and housing associations build more homes is welcome.
"Matching these ambitious plans with successful delivery will require a long-term plan combined with significant investment, so we would be interested to see more detail on how these commitments would be funded."
She added: "We have called on the next government to make sure that councils have the resources they need to tackle rising levels of homelessness, and to make sure that welfare policies are not obstructing housing policies designed to make sure people can access a decent home at a price they can afford. It’s therefore encouraging to see the Liberal Democrats making a number of commitments on homelessness and welfare, including increasing support for homelessness prevention, emergency accommodation and supported housing, reversing cuts to housing benefit for 18-21-year-olds, scrapping the bedroom tax and increasing Local Housing Allowance in line with average rents."
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