The Paris Smith Planning Team noted the following key points from yesterday’s Budget which may be of interest to stakeholders.
- The Government are to consult on how modernisation of the Use Classes Order and CPO regime can help facilitate the transformation of the High Street.
- The Government are to give councils greater control over the money they raise by removing the Housing Revenue Account cap so that councils can help to build more homes.
- The Government are to provide an additional £45m for the Disabled Facilities Grant in England in 2018-19.
- The Government are to provide £675m of co-funding to create a Future High Streets Fund to support Councils to draw-up formal plans for the transformation of their High Streets… to invest in the improvements they need… and to facilitate redevelopment of under-used retail and commercial areas into residential.
- The Government are to consult on simplification of the process for conversion of commercial property into new homes.
- The Government want to see parishes and neighbourhoods enabling more homes for sale to local people to buy at prices they can afford (providing funding to empower up to 500 neighbourhoods to allocate or permission land for housing through the neighbourhood planning system for sale at a discount to local people in perpetuity.)
- The Member of Parliament for West Dorset’s review of build-out rates was published yesterday and concluded that the large housebuilders are not engaged in systematic speculative land-banking. The review made several recommendations for reform of the planning system in respect of very large strategic housing sites however – and the Government are expected to respond in full to the report in the New Year.
- In last year’s Budget the Government abolished Stamp Duty for First Time Buyers on properties up to £300,000. Yesterday’s Budget announced this relief will be extended to all first time buyers of shared ownership properties valued up to £500k (and also retrospectively so any first time buyer who has made such a purchase since the last Budget will benefit.)
- The Chancellor announced up to £1bn of British Business Bank guarantees to support the revival of SME housebuilders.
- The Chancellor announced a further £500m for the Housing Infrastructure Fund, to unlock 650,000 homes.
- The Chancellor announced the next wave of strategic partnerships with 9 Housing Associations which aims to deliver 13,000 homes across England.
- The Chancellor announced he is making an additional £420m available immediately to Local Highway Authorities to tackle potholes, bridge repairs, and other minor works in this financial year.
- The Chancellor announced in yesterday’s Budget that the Government will be funding ten University Enterprise Zones.
- The Help to Buy scheme that was due to end in April 2021, is now expected to end in March 2023.
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