Briefing: Supply of Homes and Affordable Homes

By: Robin White  Published: July 2017

For a generation we have failed to build enough homes, and particularly enough affordable homes. This failure is at the heart of all the housing problems we see from falling home ownership and rapidly rising rents to homelessness. To solve this we cannot continue to rely on our current speculative housebuilding model, which simply can't deliver. Instead we need to embrace the ideas of New Civic Housebuilding, which will allow us to rediscover the English tradition of building beautiful and affordable homes.


For a generation now we have failed to build enough homes, particularly affordable homes. Rightly tackling this is now a political priority for all parties, however, it is important that the approach that is taken is the right one. We cannot continue to rely on speculative housebuilding, which cannot deliver the homes that we need.; instead we need to look to the English tradition of Civic Housebuilding. Through New Civic Housebuilding we can address the barriers that currently prevent us from building more homes that are also more affordable, better quality and that provide more community infrastructure.

In this briefing we have outlined the key methods by which we can begin to dramatically increase the supply of homes and affordable homes in England, these are:

  1. Enable the creation of a new generation of New Towns by reforming Compulsory Purchase Order compensation (CPOs);
  2. Address the slow rate of build-out;
  3. Look again at the role of viability in determining levels of affordable housing;
  4. Make better use of public land.

The government must now build on its Housing White Paper and commit to taking action in these areas, without doing so we will not see the progress that we need.


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