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Housing: Low Incomes

Volume 458: debated on Monday 19 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will require local authorities to increase the amount of affordable housing they provide. (127662)

Local planning authorities can control the number, size and type of affordable housing built in their areas through the planning system. In support of this, we have been encouraging them to develop their strategic housing role, including the assessment of future needs for affordable housing.

New supply of affordable housing is provided mainly by the Housing Corporation through the National Affordable Housing Programme and some is provided without grant by developers under S106. The Housing Corporation and individual Registered Social Landlords work closely with local authorities to deliver increased amounts of affordable housing. We have set ourselves the target of delivering 30,000 social rented units in 2007-08—a 50 per cent. increase on 2004-05 levels.

In addition, we are also examining the scope for high performing local authorities and their ALMOs to build more social housing for retained ownership. This might entail partnerships between authorities, ALMOs and developers, using local authority land. Such schemes could complement development led by Registered Social Landlords where it provides value for money.