CIH responds to Queen’s Speech
Responding to today’s Queen’s Speech, Chartered Institute of Housing chief executive Terrie Alafat CBE said: "We need an ambitious, long-term plan to tackle our housing crisis so it is encouraging to hear the government’s commitment to get more homes built and to bring forward the measures outlined in its housing white paper.
"But it’s not just about building more homes, it’s about building more affordable homes for people on lower incomes. We believe more investment is urgently needed in genuinely affordable homes to rent. Figures released this week revealed that the number of homes for social rent built with government funding dropped by 51 per cent in 2016/17. One of the new government’s priorities should be rebalancing the housing budget – affordable housing currently accounts for just 16 per cent of total direct investment."
She added: "CIH has been calling for a ban on letting agent fees so it’s good to see draft legislation being brought forward to tackle this issue."
Terrie Alafat said the continuing uncertainty over the future funding of supported housing risks undermining government moves to provide appropriate services for our ageing population. She said: "We are still waiting for the consultation on the government’s proposal to extend the Local Housing Allowance cap to supported housing, which is designed for people who need extra support, such as older people or people with a mental or physical disability. It’s absolutely vital that the government moves quickly on this issue. Supported housing schemes provide homes for some of the most vulnerable people in our society, and our ageing population means that demand is only increasing. We know that many supported housing providers will have put sites on hold while we wait for a decision on future funding and continuing uncertainty could be very damaging."