Published: 26th Oct 2020

The government spent £173m on its starter homes programme, which failed to deliver a single new house, a senior civil servant has revealed. Speaking in front of the public accounts committee last week, the permanent secretary at Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, Jeremy Pocklington confirmed his department had spent that figure on the programme. In April 2015, the Conservative Party manifesto promised to build 200,000 starter homes, which would be sold at a 20% discount and will be built exclusively for first-time buyers under the age of 40. The November 2015 Spending Review subsequently provided £2.3bn to support the delivery of 60,000 starter homes, of the 200,000 previously announced. But a report published last year by the National Audit Office confirmed not a single new home had been built as part of the scheme. Mr Pocklington told MPs the starter homes programme had been a priority for the … (To read the full article, subscribe below)