Welcome rise in affordable housing
Housing Minister Grant Shapps has welcomed new figures showing the largest increase in the supply of affordable homes since the mid-1990s.
New figures published this week show there were 60,630 additional affordable homes delivered last year - an increase of five per cent on the numbers supplied in 2009/10.
These new figures also showed an increase of nearly a fifth in the numbers of new social homes, to over 39,000. And over 20,000 homes were provided through intermediate affordable housing schemes, including shared ownership and shared equity schemes aimed at helping struggling first-time buyers.
Through the New Homes Bonus the Government matches the council tax raised on all additional homes for six years - but councils also receive extra funding for every affordable home they build.
This week's figures mean that councils can expect to receive a share of over £21million for the affordable homes they've approved - on top of the matched council tax on each new property.
Housing Minister Grant Shapps said:
"Reviving a housebuilding market that was brought to its knees takes time, so I am encouraged by today's figures which show the highest number of additional affordable homes being delivered over the past year since the mid-1990s. Our efforts to get Britain building again are continuing, with a £4.5billion Affordable Homes programme set to exceed expectations and deliver up to 170,000 new homes over the next four years.
"Thanks to this increase in affordable homes, councils across the country will next year benefit from a share of over £21million through the New Homes Bonus, on top of the funding they can expect as we match the council tax raised on new properties for six years.
"I would urge all councils to start discussing with their residents how they would like to see this extra New Homes Bonus funding spent, so for the first time they can see the benefits of this additional growth for themselves."