According to reports from The Sun newspaper, Communities’ Secretary Sajid Javid has demanded an extra £50 billion from the Treasury in order to fund a new house building programme.
Speaking on The Andrew Marr Show on 22 October, Javid said: “What I want to do is make sure we are using everything I have available to deal with the housing crisis. Where that means, for example, we can sensibly borrow more to invest in the infrastructure that leads to more housing, take advantage of some of the record low interest rates that we have, I think we should absolutely be considering that.”
During his interview, the communities’ secretary also recognised that the UK needs to build between 275,000 and 300,000 new homes a year to address the housing crisis.
The House Builders Association (HBA), the house building division of the National Federation of Builders (NFB), has often highlighted the need to build 300,000 new homes every year to tackle the crisis. The HBA is also campaigning to reform of the planning system by shifting attention to smaller sites and greater SME participation in the housing market.
Rico Wojtulewicz, policy advisor for the HBA, said: “We must combine any increased infrastructure spending with a laser-focus on developing our existing communities. Many capital projects and large development sites take too long to deliver, by which time the country might need to build 450,000 homes a year to address the housing crisis.”
Wojtulewicz added: “The best approach to investing in new communities is by exhausting small and infill sites in our existing ones. This is the only sustainable way that will allow us to plan for infrastructure on new large sites without overburdening already established communities.”