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Briefings

Member Briefing: Housing White Paper consultation and supplementary documents

Date: 08/02/17

Housing White Paper consultation and supplementary documents

Following yesterday’s publication of the Housing White Paper, the Government also published a large number of supplementary documents responding to consultations, recent Select Committee reports and independent reviews, as well as issuing a new consultation on Build to Rent and commencing the formal process for the White Paper consultation. 

HBF’s briefing on the main features of the White Paper can be found here, and more information on the supplementary papers is below..  

Housing White Paper consultation 

HBF will be preparing a comprehensive response to the 38 areas on which Government is inviting comments and information, and will be in touch with members shortly on relevant sections etc. If you would like to support this process please contact David O’Leary on david.oleary@hbf.co.uk

Consultation questions are included in the White Paper. Responses are invited online here. 

Independent review of the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) 

The Government has published the independent review, conducted last year by industry professionals and local government representatives. The Government has pledged to respond to the recommendations at the Autumn Budget 2017. The review team’s key recommendations were: 

  • Replacing CIL with a hybrid system of a broad, low level Local Infrastructure Tariff (LIT) for small sites with Section 106 reserved for large sites
  • Combined Authorities should be empowered to establish an additional requirement for a Strategic Infrastructure Tariff (SIT).  

The full report, and all of the review team’s recommendations are available, along with an independent research report here. 

Starter Homes 

The Government has issued its formal response to the consultation on Starter Homes regulations which ran from March to June 2016. 

Key points:  

  • There will be no compulsory Starter Homes minimum requirement introduced. Instead Government is consulting on a minimum 10% affordable home ownership requirement. The exact mix of products on sites will be determined through discussion between developers and local authorities.
  • The restriction period had previously been pitched at five, and then latterly eight years. This has now been settled at 15 years. The detailed operation of the taper will be set out in regulations.
  • Cash buyers are to be excluded from purchasing, and a new requirement for at least a 25% mortgage has been introduced.
  • Starter Homes are intended for purchasers under the age of 40. Where the purchasing household is a couple only one needs to be under 40 for the couple to purchase on a joint basis provided both are first-time buyers.   

The consultation response is available here. 

Build to Rent consultation 

Ministers would like to address what is considered a market and regulatory failure impeding the development of the Build to Rent market. It is believed that there are multiple benefits in helping to grow this sector, including additional supply, speed of delivery, quality and choice in the PRS and stimulating investment appetite. 

The key proposals and considerations are:  

  • Government intends to revise the NPPF to explicitly refer to Build to Rent as a form of housing that should be considered during the development of local plans
  • There is a need to formally define Build to Rent. Government invites views on a minimum scheme size (potentially 50 units), tenancy length, management and ownership and typology. Government is not minded to include a covenant within the definition requiring that the scheme remain totally rented for a minimum period
  • Where schemes are moved out of the Build to Rent sector, Government proposes a ‘clawback’ arrangement whereby the developer/owner would need to make provision for the affordable housing that would have been provided had the scheme not benefited from the special arrangements for Build to Rent
  • Planning authorities may be given the power to specify minimum tenancy lengths for Build to Rent schemes in order to make them more family friendly
  • Councils will be asked to give consideration to asking for Affordable Private Rent (AKA Discounted Market Rent), a new form of affordable housing, in place of other forms of affordable housing on Build to Rent schemes
  • The document proposes that an Affordable Private Rent requirement be set at 20% of a site, with the minimum discount being 20% of market rent in perpetuity
  • Government would prefer to leave the determination of eligibility and nomination criteria for Affordable Private Rent (APR) to negotiation between developers and LPAs
  • Views are invited on whether Affordable Private Rent should only be acceptable on Build to Rent schemes. The consultation questions whether APR might become widely used on all types of scheme and thus crowd out other affordable housing
  • Other suggestions for planning policies to support Build to Rent on which views are invited include:
    • Permission in Principle in favour of Build to Rent schemes meeting certain characteristics
    • Presumption in favour of Build to Rent schemes meeting certain characteristics
    • Permitted Development Rights for Build to Rent schemes meeting certain characteristics
    • Creation of a specific planning use class for Build to Rent
  • The consultation asks whether London should be covered by the national policy or should Build to Rent and APR policy differ in the capital 

The consultation paper is available here. HBF will make a submission to the consultation. 

Other documents 

In addition, alongside the Housing White Paper, Government has also published: 

 

David O’Leary

Policy Director

david.oleary@hbf.co.uk