On 14 September, Sajid Javid announced details for a new methodology to calculate housing need in local communities – a policy first mooted in the Government’s Housing White Paper.
In a statement to the House of Commons, the communities’ secretary explained that the policy would measure each local authority’s housing need. Javid argued that – if adopted nationally – this method would result in England building approximately 260,000 new homes a year.
These would consist of basing assessments on local household projection data over a ten-year timeframe, which would then be multiplied in areas where house prices outstrip average incomes. Housing target increases will be limited at 40 per cent of the number set in a council’s local plan or 40 per cent of projected households, should the local authority not have an adopted local plan.
The House Builders Association (HBA) – the house building division of the National Federation of Builders (NFB) – welcomed Javid’s announcement, as it will make local authorities responsible for cooperating with regional SMEs in the supply chain to deliver the right homes in the right places.
Rico Wojtulewicz, policy advisor for the HBA, said:
“The Housing White Paper was a meaningful first step in solving the housing crisis and we are delighted that it remains part of the Government’s ambition. Local authorities have failed to enable deliverable supply through their plan-making process. This has not only stifled supply, but the capacity of the local supply chain.
“To meet the Government’s challenge, local authorities will need to concentrate on making sure local plans deliver a meaningful increase in supply. This will require shifting focus from larger slow-to-deliver sites towards smaller and infill sites – which are delivered more quickly, favoured by local communities, and do not exacerbate existing infrastructure.”