asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government if he is aware of the dissatisfaction that arises from the fixed nature of housing loans granted by local authorities; and whether he will seek to make some simplified movement of interest rates mandatory.
Housing loans may carry fixed or variable rates of interest depending on the method of financing adopted by the local authority. My right hon. Friend is aware that there have been complaints where rates have been fixed for the period of the loan. He is reviewing the lending policies of local authorities including the methods of fixing lending rates.
Will the hon. Gentleman bear in mind that many authorities refuse to have a varying rate because of the inconvenience which this causes to them and that this matter of convenience ought not to stand before the interests of the ordinary citizen?
Yes; we will take that into account.
Will my hon. Friend bear in mind that the dissatisfaction varies directly with the rate of interest originally fixed? Will he also bear in mind that it is desirable to leave some functions with local authorities to decide locally, in the light of requirements in their areas?
Yes. My right hon. Friend will be making a statement very shortly, I hope, in regard to interest terms which will be available to local authorities.