Lindsay Todd, Chief Executive of Radian Group, one of the south’s largest housing providers based in Eastleigh, on today’s housing white paper. It welcomed the new shift in policy towards the expanding rental market, the introduction of measures to manage ambitious housebuilding targets and transparency of land ownership, and the part Radian aims to play in helping to increase housing supply over the course of this Parliament.
Commenting on the Housing White Paper, Radian Chief Executive Lindsay Todd said:
‘We welcome the Government’s White Paper and commitment to deliver more homes, as well as the ambition to make housing more affordable.
‘The acknowledgement that affordable housing should comprise a wide range of tenures and types of homes is welcome, as is the shift in policy towards the growing millions of renters, especially younger renters. Through experience of delivering sustainable developments we know that a mix of tenures is key to creating successful long-term communities.
‘The measures to make private renting more secure for tenants are something we are wholeheartedly committed to through our private rented sector brand, SMART. We look forward to seeing more long-term tenancies made available to allow for greater stability for families renting. Today one in four families with children live in a home rented from a private landlord and we want to give them the same level of security that private owners enjoy. Through SMART., we are committed to driving up standards in the private rented sector and our customers value the fact that their rented homes are backed by a quality landlord. In July 2016 we increased our own commitment to private rented housing with a £27 million development investment in Bournemouth.
‘The introduction of measures to ensure councils in areas of high demand come up with ambitious housebuilding targets which are implemented through robust planning policies, as well as the plans to increase transparency of land ownership to assist in access to land and to prevent land banking are welcome. The measures to reduce the time between planning permission being granted and new homes being built will assist in driving delivery. Unlike private developers, we, as a property management business, are not constrained by sales rates and are able to move quickly to deliver high quality housing once a viable and implementable planning permission has been granted on a piece of land.
‘We welcome the steps taken to reserve sites for prefabricated buildings, as this will encourage investment at scale which is what is required to deliver much-needed homes more efficiently and affordably. We recognise that off-site manufacture can only form part of the overall housing mix but given the increasing shortage of construction capacity in the country, off site manufacture has an important role in meeting the Government’s housebuilding targets and helping to address the skills shortage.
‘We commend the opening up of the Affordable Homes Programme and believe greater access to Rent to Buy and Shared Ownership homes will enable thousands of households to access home ownership through a product that fits their circumstance. We are committed to delivering high quality homes of all tenures, and will work with the Government and local authorities over the course of this Parliament and beyond to ensure we do all we can to tackle the housing crisis.’