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UK must build many more homes for rent

There needs to be a tenfold increase in the number of homes that are built for private rent, and new home builders need to be relieved of their obligations to include ‘affordable homes’ on their schemes.

The calls have come from Sir John Banham, chairman of the Future Homes Commission, speaking at a Housing Market Intelligence conference.

He said that in a generation’s time, Britain needs to be building three times as many new homes as today, including a ‘massive increase’ in build-to-let schemes and in the shared ownership sector.

He called for private rental homes to be built in ‘sustainable communities’ on brownfield sites close to towns, and on schemes with mixed tenure.

He also said that social housing and market housing need to be de-coupled because Section 106 is ‘not working’. Under Section 106 agreements, developers are legally obliged to provide typically 40% of affordable homes for social housing.

Sir John said it is essential to find new sources of mortgage lending, because financial regulators are set to make ‘a real mess’ of the lending sector.

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