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Funding boost for affordable housing in Scotland

Words: Laura Edgar
Land transaction tax / Shutterstock_195196565

Scottish communities secretary Aileen Campbell has announced a further £826 million to help deliver affordable housing.

The money has been allocated in the 2019/20 Scottish Budget and will be made available through the Affordable Housing Supply Programme. It represents a £70 million increase on the current year.

The Scottish Government is aiming to deliver 50,000 affordable homes by 2021.

Campbell said the increased budget forms part of the single biggest investment in, and delivery of, affordable housing since devolution. Over £3 billion has been committed to delivering good-quality affordable housing in order to create strong, sustainable communities.

“We have set an ambitious target to deliver at least 50,000 affordable homes over the course of this Parliament, including 35,000 for social rent and are making good progress towards that. By ensuring councils and housing associations have financial certainty we are confident that this commitment can be fulfilled.”

Statistics on the Affordable Housing Supply Programme

  • 58,427 of the 80,000 affordable homes delivered since 2007 have been new-build.
  • 54,537 of the 80,000 have been for social rent, 19,553 for affordable home ownership, and 6,014 for affordable rent.

The Scottish Federation of Housing Associations (SFHA) welcomed the increased funding for affordable housing. However, it has called on the government to commit to funding beyond the lifetime of this Parliament in order to meet outstanding and future need.

Sally Thomas, the association’s chief executive, said: “It is vital that the post-2021 Affordable Housing Supply Programme maintains the existing levels of funding to meet outstanding and future need. As well as longer-term funding, it is equally important that we ensure we have the right homes, in the right places, to meet people’s needs and aspirations.”

To increase the supply of new homes, SFHA also want to see planning and land system reform in order to provide affordable land for housing development and  reform of the housing system so that a range of high-quality affordable housing is available to meet people’s changing needs throughout their lives.

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