Councils call for major house building drive to spur post Covid-19 recovery


Regular readers of the Advantage blog will have noticed that we’ve been writing a lot about what the future’s likely to hold for construction in recent weeks (a question we’re certainly not alone in asking!)

It’s an issue that the Local Government Association (LGA) has been grappling with, and their proposed solution is a post-pandemic building boom.

Covid 19 recovery housebuildingAs reported by Infrastructure Intelligence, a new report by the LGA declares that 100,000 affordable homes a year will be needed to provide housing fit for social care, health and other key workers who have fought coronavirus on the frontline and the families of those who lost their lives,

A statement on the LGA website explains that: Through sustained government intervention with both private enterprise and Registered Providers (RPs), overall housing supply has been on an upward trajectory over recent years.

Housing investment from all sources has an important part to play in a shared local and central government ambition to stimulate economic growth.

The COVID-19 response by key workers provides a powerful call to action to redouble efforts to scale-up supply of low-cost homes to rent and to buy, right across the country.

A generational step-change

Councils want to play their full part in ensuring a generational step-change in the supply of these homes, in order to meet the housing needs of people in different circumstances and at different stages of their lives. The LGA’s report outlines a package of measures that will enable them to do exactly that.

Councils already play a vital role in housing supply as planning and housing authorities, as partners with house builders and registered providers, as direct builders, as providers of homes for the most vulnerable and as local place leaders. However, planning for the “new normal” provides a unique opportunity for the sector to release its potential to do much more.

The LGA says it is therefore imperative as part of the response to the pandemic that Government considers what steps, measures and reforms would support councils to work towards delivering a new generation of 100,000 high quality social homes per year.

With previous research for the LGA and partners showing that investment in a new generation of social housing could return £320 billion to the nation over 50 years, the arguments for investment in social housing as an economic stimulus will grow stronger in a post COVID-19 world.

Advantage’s view

Covid-19 recovery Advantage's viewWe’ve written previously about how construction is helping to revive the UK job market, and no one would dispute that the sector will be key in helping to reboot the UK economy over the coming months. This makes the drive to build more affordable homes even more significant than it was prior to the pandemic, as it is likely that those currently priced out of the housing market, including some key workers, will need help onto the housing ladder more than ever, as many face greater financial uncertainty. Also, we are already seeing how social and affordable housing providers are continuing to thrive during these turbulent times, meaning that they’ll continue to play their part in boosting construction output, creating not just good quality affordable homes, but also jobs at a time when both are undeniably needed.

Do you work in social housing? Advantage Home Construction Insurance works with Housing Associations, providing latent defects insurance. If you would like more information, call: 0845 900 3969, email: sales@ahci.co.uk or pay a visit to our homepage: https://ahci.co.uk/

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Advantage Home Construction Insurance (AHCI) provides structural defects insurance – operating nationally with offices in Warrington, London and Birmingham – offering development-related insurances and a service designed to give customers peace of mind.

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