Housing associations pledge ‘united front’ with London councils as Khan is slammed for affordable figures

A group of leading housing associations has pledged to form a ‘united front’ with London’s councils to build more affordable homes.

The G15 group has pledged to include collaboration on land acquisition, using faster methods of construction, investing in existing homes to improve the condition of housing, and making the case to Government for a higher rate of grant funding per home.

Paul Hackett, chair of the G15 and chief executive of Optivo, said: ‘Too many Londoners are in the grip of a housing crisis that thwarts ambition, creates homelessness, forces overcrowding, and prices out many people who call London home.

‘Everyone recognises that solving this crisis can’t be left to traditional builders alone. For the first time in many years, councils’ ambitions to build more homes can become a reality and we stand side-by-side with them in our desire to deliver genuinely affordable homes.

‘Both councils and housing associations are long-term investors and partners to London’s communities, and we have a shared mission to help those in housing need.  We should form a united front to boost the number of quality, affordable homes we can build together.’

Last month, Theresa May announced the end the borrowing cap on local councils to build new homes and ‘fix the broken housing market.’

In the capital, the Mayor of London has already increased the funding available to councils and housing associations to build social rent level and ‘London Living Rent’ homes, and has struck nine partnerships with housing associations in a model now being rolled out nationally by Homes England.

However, the London Assembly Housing Committee published their latest report this week criticising Khan for the number of ‘affordable’ homes he’s delivered over the past year, with committee chair Sian Berry saying he had ‘let down’ Londoners.

The report said that London needs 66,000 affordable homes, but less than 5,500 were built in 2017-18.

‘He promised us more affordable housing but so far has fallen very short of his promises, particularly on social housing which is our greatest need,’ said Ms Berry.

The below graphic published courtesy of the London Assembly.

Thomas Barrett
Senior journalist - NewStart Follow him on Twitter


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