Chartered Institute of Housing responds to Conservative manifesto
Commenting on the publication of the Conservative party’s General Election manifesto, Chartered Institute of Housing chief executive Terrie Alafat CBE said: "All three major parties have now rightly recognised that we need an ambitious long-term plan to get to grips with our national housing crisis. We know we need to build at least 250,000 homes a year in England to meet demand, so it’s very positive to see commitments to increase house-building in all of the major parties’ manifestos.
"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. Historically we have only built anywhere near the number of homes we need when the public sector has been directly involved in building, so it’s encouraging to see the Conservatives commit to help councils build more homes, including through capital funding. The pledge to help housing associations build more homes is also 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."
Terrie Alafat welcomed the party’s commitment to set up a new homelessness reduction taskforce focusing on prevention and affordable housing, but added that more focus was needed on welfare policies to make sure they are not obstructing housing policies designed to make sure people can access a decent home at a price they can afford. She said: "It’s encouraging to see the commitment to help housing associations increase their specialist housing stock for older people. We would like to see more details of this pledge as current plans to extend the Local Housing Allowance to supported housing will have the opposite effect, putting housing for elderly and vulnerable people at risk."
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