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NAEA Propertymark comments on Spring Statement

Wednesday 13 March 2019

Today, 13 March 2019, the Chancellor has presented his Spring Statement to Parliament. A key part of the Government’s plan is to invest in the future including fixing the broken housing market.

The Government believe that building more homes in the right places is critical to unlocking productivity growth and makes housing more affordable.

The Chancellor has set out a new £3bn Affordable Homes Guarantee scheme, to support delivery of around 30,000 affordable home as well as a £717m from the Housing Infrastructure Fund to unlock up to 37,000 new homes on sites in West London, Cheshire, Didcot, and Cambridge.

The Spring Statement set out further steps to deliver the Government’s ambitions:

Housing

  • Future Homes Standard – A Future Homes Standard, to be introduced by 2025, future-proofing new build homes with low carbon heating and world-leading levels of energy efficiency. The new standard will build on the Prime Minister’s Industrial Strategy Grand Challenge mission to at least halve the energy use of new buildings by 2030.
  • Independent Report on Build Out Rates – Introduce additional planning guidance to support housing diversification on large sites. Sir Oliver Letwin concluded that greater differentiation in the types and tenures of housing delivered on large sites would increase build out rates.
  • Response to consultation on Planning Reform – Introduce a package of reforms including allowing greater change of use between premises, and a new permitted development right to allow upwards extension of existing buildings to create new homes.
  • Accelerated Planning Green Paper – Publish a Green Paper setting out proposals on how greater capacity and capability, performance management and procedural improvements can accelerate the end-to-end planning process.

 Housing tax

  • Structures and Buildings Allowance – Draft legislation, published for comment, on introducing a new, permanent allowance for investments in non-residential structures and buildings to create a more competitive tax regime for businesses – as announced at Budget 2018. The government intends to lay this legislation early this summer.
  • Aggregates Levy review – A discussion paper launching a review of the Aggregates Levy, including the Terms of Reference, information on timing and scope of the review as well as membership of an expert working group.
  • Stamp Taxes on shares consideration rules – A consultation on aligning the consideration rules of Stamp Duty and Stamp Duty Reserve Tax and introducing a general market value rule for transfers between connected persons.

Spring Statement 2019 - What you need to know

Commenting on the new £3bn Affordable Homes Guarantee scheme, Mark Hayward, Chief Executive, NAEA Propertymark, said:

“We support anything which serves to increase the supply of housing stock and improve accessibility for first-time buyers (FTBs) who have been increasingly priced out of the market over the last five years. Demand for housing continues to rise, and the number of new homes currently being built isn’t enough to fill this void. Coupled with the fact that the buying and selling process is lengthy and expensive, there’s no incentive for homeowners to move. This means people are staying in their first properties for longer and consequently, there’s a severe lack of affordable housing, so we wholly support the measures announced today. However, in terms of annual transactions, 30,000 affordable homes simply isn’t enough to fix the broken housing market. More needs to be done.”