Sadiq Khan pledges to build 6,000 ‘affordable’ homes and bring in rent controls

Sadiq Khan pledges to build 6,000 ‘affordable’ homes and bring in rent controls

9:53 AM, 8th April 2024, About 2 months ago 24

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London’s mayor, Sadiq Khan, says he is the ‘renter’s champion’ and is committing to building 6,000 ‘affordable’ homes by 2030 with rents tied to the earnings of key workers.

Mr Khan was speaking at the launch of his third mayoral bid and will use powers he has already to cap the rent for these homes at one-third of the average wage of key workers.

The homes will be built by local councils and housing associations, who will identify suitable land for development.

There’s no indication of how much the house-building programme will cost.

The Conservative mayoral candidate poured scorn on the plans, saying: “Rent controls have never worked, and Sadiq knows it.”

‘Renters are at the sharp end’

Mr Khan said: “Renters are at the sharp end of the country’s housing crisis and need a mayor who’s prepared to fight their corner.

“I’ve been calling for the power to freeze rents in the capital for years, but the government has refused.”

He went on: “I’m not willing to stand by and do nothing so I commit to delivering new rent control homes across London, with 6,000 in the first phase.

“These will be homes for rent which key workers and middle-income Londoners can afford.”

Introduce more comprehensive property licensing reforms

The mayor also expressed his desire to collaborate with a future Labour government to introduce more comprehensive property licensing reforms.

This would empower councils to support renters in reclaiming up to two years of rent from landlords who violate the rules.

However, rent controls are not currently a national Labour Party policy.

‘Why is he just announcing it now?’

Conservative mayoral candidate Susan Hall said: “If Sadiq has been able to do this the whole time, why is he just announcing it now? Rent controls have never worked, and Sadiq knows it.

“His hair-brained plan would worsen the housing crisis for Londoners and shows he simply isn’t listening.

“I am listening to Londoners, and that’s why I would build more family-sized homes, to increase supply – and therefore bring down rents.”

The announcement comes after the Green Party launched its own local elections campaign with a push for more affordable homes.

The party is calling for more funding to help councils build homes, an end to the Right to Buy and the introduction of rent controls in places where the rental market is ‘overheated’.


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Comments

Beaver

14:55 PM, 9th April 2024, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Reluctant Landlord at 09/04/2024 - 14:34
Agreed. And leaving aside the build-cost itself there is also the cost of acquiring land including buildings for demolition. That's a high cost in London. Even if he went for compulsory purchase the guidance is:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/compulsory-purchase-and-compensation-guide-2-compensation-to-business-owners-and-occupiers#:~:text=The%20law%20specifies%20that%20the,which%20is%20to%20be%20acquired.

"Market value
24. The law specifies that the compensation to be paid where land is compulsorily acquired shall reflect what that land might be expected to realise if it were sold in the open market by a willing seller at the valuation date. In other words, compensation is based on the market value of the land which is to be acquired."

So unless he managed to get the law changed and someone gave him the kind of powers that either Vladimir Putin or President Xi have (and who knows, he may want these powers) building 6,000 homes would cost an eye-watering amount of money. It is as you say electioneering.

Probably the only organisations in the UK that could afford the amount of money for the kind of investment he's talking about are pension funds. But both UK pensions funds and foreign investors would want their pound of flesh.

Reluctant Landlord

19:17 PM, 9th April 2024, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Beaver at 09/04/2024 - 14:55
it's an 'ideal' but no deal, done deal!

Stella

12:07 PM, 28th April 2024, About 2 months ago

Sadiq Khan is also now pledging to pay the costs for tenants taking their landlords to court.

Can you imagine all the issues with mould caused by tenants not ventilating, turning off bathroom fans, drying clothes, not heating the property etc..etc and blaming the landlord and then Mr Khan saying no problem here is the money take him to court and the landlord can pay his own costs.

He should not be allowed to use public money in this way!

GlanACC

12:16 PM, 28th April 2024, About 2 months ago

Unless the council (government) stump up cash for 'affordable' homes then the only way they can be 'affordable' is for the price of private new builds on an estate to be artificially inflated to include a pot of money for an 'affordable' home (so not only do you have to pay SDLT but an extra bit creamed off -- which is also included in the SDLT). This is why many new build estates are now saying they cannot afford to build any affordable homes.

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