A new £11.5bn affordable homes programme will be delivered over five years from 2021 to 2026, providing up to 180,000 new homes across the country, “should economic conditions allow”. It says that around half of the new homes will be available for affordable homeownership. The rest will be made available for discounted rent, including 10% for supported housing – to support those with physical or mental health challenges.
MHCLG says the programme will unlock a further £38bn in public and private investment in affordable housing. New homes will be made available from next year.
Nearly £7.5bn will be delivered outside London by Homes England, with the Greater London Authority offered £4bn -negotiations about what they will deliver with this funding are in progress.
Homes England will publish its Affordable Homes Programme prospectus this week, inviting councils, housing associations and private providers to start preparing their bids. New homes will be delivered from next year.
Housing secretary Robert Jenrick said, “The announcement represents the highest single funding commitment to affordable housing in a decade and is part of our comprehensive plans to build back better.
“This government is helping hard-working families and prospective first-time buyers get their feet on the housing ladder in an affordable way.”
As well as delivering homes for affordable ownership, the new programme will deliver homes for Affordable and Social Rent. Funding for Social Rent, which is typically 50 to 60% of market prices, will be available to housing providers across the country.
Jenrick also announced a new model for shared ownership which will reduce the minimum initial share you can buy in a property from 25% to 10%. It will also allow people to buy additional shares in their home in 1% instalments, with heavily reduced fees and introduce a ten year period for new shared owners where the landlord will cover the cost of any repairs and maintenance.
A Right to Shared Ownership will be available on the vast majority of rented homes delivered through the new programme, providing tenants with a pathway into ownership by giving them the right to purchase a stake in their home.
Additionally, the housing secretary has launched a consultation to consider how best to raise accessibility standards for all new homes in recognition of the importance of suitable homes for older and disabled people.
Nick Walkley, chief executive of Homes England, said, “We welcome the launch of the new Affordable Homes fund, which gives Homes England a unique opportunity to work on behalf of the government to accelerate the delivery of high-quality, affordable homes.”