Affordable homes blow

Doubt has been cast on the ability of  Eastleigh council’s ‘Draft Local Plan’ to deliver affordable housing following a report in The Guardian that the current rules which compel house builders to include affordable homes in new developments will be scrapped.

While Eastleigh has 6100 people on the housing register – a statistic Councillors use to justify plans to build 4700 homes on greenfield sites – last week Cllr Chris Thomas told Aviary residents that as few as 20% of the new homes will be affordable.

However even this may prove unachievable as The Guardian claims that the forthcoming National Planning Policy Framework will eliminate ‘section 106 agreements’ which require that developments of 15 properties must contain an element of affordable housing.

The NPPF will also scrap targets for councils building affordable properties and even the need to establish the proportion of private and affordable housing required.

According to Shelter, in 2010, even with targets in place EBC only delivered 230 affordable homes – just 34% of what the housing charity estimates should be built annually in the Borough.

The Guardian says there are concerns that scrapping affordable housing requirements:

“Plays too much into the hands of property developers who favour building expensive properties on greenfield sites.”

And that

“A reduction in mixed housing developments will see poorer people ‘ghettoised’ in less attractive areas”

David Orr, chief executive of the National Housing Federation warned that the changes:

“Could let private developers off the hook in terms of delivering thousands of affordable homes on their developments,”

“With no targets for local authorities to meet in terms of building affordable housing in their area, the new framework could see these section 106 deals ripped up in future and many developments built without any social homes at all. This would be a disaster for the millions of people stuck on housing waiting lists.”

The Guardian

  10 comments for “Affordable homes blow

  1. Peter Stewart
    October 2, 2011 at 7:59 pm

    Sounds like desperate measures!

  2. October 3, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    The Tories latest policy to increase discounts for council house sales does nothing for those who are on waiting lists for social housing.

    With the ecomomy dipping further below the redline and banks not coughing up the required amount of mortgages that are demanded, couple this with the house building companies whinging that not enough people are buying thier houses…what have you got?

    For staters its not a house building program that is going to get us out of recession. The 6100 waiting in Eastleigh wont be encouraged by the coalition government or Eastleigh councils appraoch to solving the demand for social housing. The downward spiral that started with Thatchers right to buy policy that effectively brought the Tories votes and government is complmented by Camerons further discounts along with the announced freeze of council tax. We can expect to see this blazoned across election leaflets next year.

    The big question is, how many people will be taken in yet again?

  3. Keith House
    October 4, 2011 at 5:14 pm

    The Borough’s new Local Plan includes a policy that on all sites of 15 or more new homes, 35% will be affordable, i.e. rented out or part-rented through a housings association.

  4. mm
    Eastleigh Xpress
    October 4, 2011 at 8:16 pm

    The question was raised by a resident ‘What proportion of new build will be social housing” The answer on the night was 20% – 30% so that would have been between 260 – 390 homes yes? But you are saying there will be 35% – 455 homes to be socially rented at the Stoneham Lane site irrespective of whatever the Guardian says as regards the future of 106.
    Can you guarantee development will not go ahead without that 35% level of commitment to social housing on the site?

  5. mm
    Eastleigh Xpress
    October 4, 2011 at 8:16 pm

    Thanks!

  6. Chris Thomas
    October 7, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    What I actually said was 20 to 30 % achieved on sites in the town on average in the past. I will be supporting the intention to get 35% on sites over 15 homes in the future.

    Small sites, will still be exempt which lowers the average.

    20% is selective reporting

    • Matthew Myatt
      October 7, 2011 at 8:18 pm

      Ahhh, “selective reporting..”

      Something that you and your fellow Lib Dem chums know all about.!

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      October 14, 2011 at 12:45 pm

      I don’t think I’ve misrpresented the council postion.
      On this story I reported.

      http://www.eastleighnews.org.uk://?p=7712

      “Councillor Thomas explained that by allowing private housing, social housing could also be built at a ratio of between 20% – 30%”

      On the basis of that, in the context of this story I have pointed out the number of Affordable homes delivered could be as low as 20%.

      You don’t say anything past averages or that it could be as ‘high’ as 35% on the audio I have – you must be thinking of another meeting.

      Out of interest what was the percentage on the development at the Centris site?

      I understand there are going to be 54 flats for the wealthy retired and only two affordable homes.

      I make that 3.7%. Those who shouted out to you at the meeting “it’s only 2%” weren’t that far out in this case were they?

  7. Andy Lombardi
    October 7, 2011 at 8:13 pm

    I am given to understand that Bellway Homes have bought the now disused Prysmian site and will be holding an exhibition of draft plans soon. Let’s hope that we get that magical 35% as affordable housing!

    • Matthew Myatt
      October 7, 2011 at 8:17 pm

      Yes, I understand that pigs can fly as well.

Comments are closed.