Landlords doubt Government’s planning reforms will deliver 1 million new homes

Landlords doubt Government’s planning reforms will deliver 1 million new homes

9:42 AM, 5th September 2023, About 11 months ago 4

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After the government announced a review of permitted development rights in a bid to shake up planning rules and build one million new homes in England by the end of the current Parliament, landlords say they doubt the move will deliver the homes.

Permitted development rights allow certain types of building work to be carried out without needing planning permission from the local authority.

The Housing Secretary Michael Gove wants to extend these rights to make it easier to convert large shops — such as takeaways and bookmakers — and offices into homes.

He also wants to cut red tape to enable barn conversions.

‘Increase choice for renters’

MFB’s managing director, Gavin Richardson, said: “Britain needs more homes to fulfil more dreams of home ownership and increase choice for renters.

“It’s great that these proposals mean that fewer empty shops or offices are left gathering dust while we have an urgent need for more homes.”

He added: “But on their own, a review of the rules around permitted development rights is not going to achieve very much.

“This is a small piece of a very large puzzle — on its own, there’s no way it is going to fix the housing crisis.”

‘Demand is high and space is scarce’

The aim is to provide more housing in inner cities, where demand is high, and space is scarce along with plans to buy up brownfield land and sell it on to housing developers.

Mr Gove says these measures will boost the supply of affordable and quality homes across the country.

But not everyone is convinced.

A survey of 270 buy to let landlords by Mortgages for Business (MFB), a specialist buy-to-let broker, found that only 7% of landlords thought the reforms would work.

The majority (59%) said they thought the reforms were ‘unlikely to scratch the surface’ of the housing shortage.

Another 19% said they thought the reforms could make the situation worse, as they focus on building homes in cities and ignore the need to reform planning laws in rural areas.

‘Important element in providing more homes’

Mr Richardson said: “Building in urban areas is an important element in providing more homes but there’s a question of capacity.

“There’s only scope for 2,000 homes to be built on brownfield sites in Oxford, for example, while in Cambridge it is 2,500.

“Furthermore, building in Birmingham, Manchester and Liverpool is not going to solve the housing shortage in the southeast.”

He adds: “To do that, we are going to have to build on London’s green belt.

“Until we accept the need for a ‘green and brown belt’ around London, the South East will continue to be short of homes, which will, of course, support the business plans of thousands of landlords.”

Quality and suitability of the homes

Landlords also raised concerns about the quality and suitability of the homes that would be created by permitted development rights.

They point out that many of the conversions would lack natural light, outdoor space, parking and amenities.

They also questioned whether there was enough demand for city living, especially after the pandemic, which has prompted many people to seek more space and greenery.


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Reluctant Landlord

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14:26 PM, 5th September 2023, About 11 months ago

"Mr Gove says these measures will boost the supply of affordable and quality homes across the country."

I couldn't read any further for laughing too hard..

Dennis Leverett

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15:04 PM, 5th September 2023, About 11 months ago

What really annoys me is that they think the minions like most of us actually believe it. I didn't laugh I felt angry at the assumption that we would believe it. Cloud cuckoo land again.

Paul Essex

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15:48 PM, 5th September 2023, About 11 months ago

What a surprise, John Lewis doesn't want too many affordable housing units!

https://www.cityam.com/john-lewis-slammed-for-build-to-rent-scheme-pic/

So those houses aren't coming from the new kids on the block anytime soon.

Fergus Wilson

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10:13 AM, 6th September 2023, About 11 months ago

I cannot see that HMG is ever going to achieve its housing targets!

The reality for many single mums is that they are never going to have a home of their own.

It is better to be honest with the rather than give false hope.

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