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Javid assigns £7bn to affordable homes

Words: Laura Edgar
Housing / Shutterstock_84968503

Communities secretary Sajid Javid has unlocked £7 billion in an expansion of the government’s affordable housing programme that aims to help the country's housing needs to be met.

Housing providers can apply for a share of the fund, which was allocated an additional £1.4 billion in November 2016’s Autumn Statement.

The expansion of the existing affordable homes programme will see it offer a wider range of ways to help people into home ownership and to provide support for those that need affordable housing.

The variety of tenures now available includes affordable rent, shared ownership and rent to buy.

Rent to buy homes will be set at or below 80 per cent local market rent for a set period of time so that tenants have the chance to save for a deposit and will then have the opportunity to buy the property.

The government expects the £7 billion programme to deliver more than 200,000 homes.

Javid said: “Our newly expanded affordable housing programme, turbo-charged by a multibillion-pound investment, will allow housing associations to build more homes in places where they are most needed, particularly for families who are just about managing.

“By encouraging the delivery of more homes under a variety of tenures, we can create a housing market which truly works for everyone, meeting the diverse housing needs of this country.”

Homes and Communities Agency chairman Sir Ed Lister said: “The expanded affordable housing programme will help us continue to work with both housing associations and developers new to this area of the housing market to increase the availability of affordable homes.

“The expanded programme will also allow providers the flexibility and agility to respond to local needs and markets. This will boost house building by encouraging providers to deliver a mix of homes for both affordable rent and low-cost ownership that is most suited to each place.”

More details about affordable housing will be published in the housing white paper coming out later this month, said the government.

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