Budget 2020: what does it mean for housing?
Last week’s Budget announcement focused on mitigating the impact of coronavirus on our economy, but what was said about the housing market?
In his first budget, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced that there would be further investment in the Affordable Homes Programme. The five-year programme will allocate £12.2 billion of grant funding from 2021-22 to build affordable homes across England. This is in a bid to help people to get on the housing ladder and is set to attract a further £38 billion in public and private investment.
The Affordable Homes Programme currently includes Shared Ownership schemes, but it will remain to be seen how the above new measures will translate to any potential new schemes or simply boosting funds to existing schemes for first time buyers.
The government is also cutting interest rates for investment in social housing by 1% to enable local authorities to “continue to invest in housing, infrastructure and frontline services”. This cut will also make an extra £1.15 billion of discounted loans available for local infrastructure projects.
Accommodation for the homeless
Almost £650m of funding will be allocated for helping rough sleepers into permanent accommodation, which includes buying up to 6,000 new places for people to live.
With an estimated 320,000 homeless people in the UK in 2019 this is at least a move towards helping those in desperate need of shelter.
Land for development
A new Brownfield Housing Fund will allocate £400 million to enable local authorities to make more brownfield land (previously developed land that is not currently in use that may be potentially contaminated) available for the development of new homes.
Necessary recourses will have to be applied by developers of such land to ensure that any contamination has been dealt with appropriately. These, of course, take time, and during the purchase transaction lawyers representing potential buyers of such properties will, as they do now, have to pay particular attention to these remedies.
Our specialist new build solicitors in Bristol and South Gloucestershire are available to advise on any aspect of new builds. We can advise you on contract terms for exchange, Land Registry requirements and arrangements for checking new builds prior to completion.