Spring Statement: Housing Overview
Yesterday, central government fiscal announcement fans, was Spring Statement Day – though it’s hard to tell if anyone noticed/cared as it was also Brexit Day, which it is everyday, of course.
So, would you like to know what was revealed? Why not!
According to chancellor Phillip Hammond, the ‘UK economy continues to grow, with wages increasing and unemployment at historic lows, providing a solid foundation on which to build Britain’s economic future’.
There followed a load more stuff about how well Hammond/the government is doing – which seems particularly remarkable coming from a regime that has somehow managed to achieve less than nothing in two years of absurd Brexit negotiations, but there you go.
Anyway, onto housing, which was promised in the headline.
The government says it is ‘determined to fix the broken housing market,’ and that ‘building more homes in the right places is critical to unlocking productivity growth and makes housing more affordable’.
Apparently, the regime is on track to deliver 300,000 new homes a year, as promised. Hmm.
Moving on, £717 million is to be taken from the £5.5 billion Housing Infrastructure Fund and used to ‘unlock up to 37,000 homes at sites including Old Oak Common in London, the Oxford-Cambridge Arc and Cheshire’.
Meanwhile, via the Affordable Homes Guarantee Scheme, the government says it will guarantee up to £3bn of borrowing by housing associations in England to support delivery of around 30,000 affordable homes.
And another £445 million from the Housing Infrastructure Fund will be deployed to unlock over 22,000 homes over on, again, the Oxford-Cambridge Arc project.
The chancellor also said that the government will hold a spending review, concluding alongside the Budget, which will set departmental budgets, including three-year budgets for resource spending, if an EU exit deal is agreed – so better not hold your breath on that one, then.
Now that’s over you can resume your normal position: staring blankly at Brexit.