Autumn Statement: Millions to persuade communities to accept new housing schemes

The Autumn Statement included a host of new housing measures
The Autumn Statement included a host of new housing measures
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HUNDREDS of millions of pounds will be spent on improving local infrastructure to try and persuade communities to support new housing developments.

Chancellor Philip Hammond unveiled a £2.3bn fund to “unlock land for housing”.

The Chancellor suggested the money would be used to help overcome objections to new housing from communities worried about the impact on local roads and other infrastructure.

In recent years the Government has considered a number of measures to reward communities which embrace housing development.

The announcement was in addition to the £1.4bn for 40,000 extra affordable homes promised ahead of the Autumn Statement.

Mr Hammond confirmed plans to ban up-front letting agents’ fees.

The Government is also to publish a White Paper on how long term problems in the UK housing market can be tackled.

Andrew McPhillips, chief economist at Yorkshire Building Society, said: “The measures to address the housing crisis announced by the Chancellor today are welcome but we hope the Government is keeping its powder dry for the eagerly anticipated Housing White Paper and next year’s Budget because more is needed.

“In order to speed up the delivery of new homes, the housing minister in the upcoming White Paper should consider devolving more powers to city regions outside London and also give councils the ability to borrow against their assets so that they can better fund housebuilding in their area.”