Industry groups have reacted to the House of Lords’ report on housing.
The British Property Federation (BPF) has praised a House of Lords report which warns that good place making and sustainability must not be pushed aside in the rush to create new homes.
The House of Lords Built Environment Select Committee Report outlines concerns that the short-term approach to building new homes is being carried out at the expense of long-term considerations, and criticises the removal of initiatives such as zero carbon homes.
Melanie Leech, chief executive of the British Property Federation, commented: “Today’s report is right to highlight the need to future-proof the creation of new homes and communities, and to warn against taking a short-term approach to delivery.”
Meanwhile, Chief Executive of the FMB Brian Berry has said: “The Committee is right to focus on the quality of housing, however to suggest that achieving numbers might come at the cost of quality is creating a false dichotomy.
In particular, the Committee has misunderstood the impetus behind calls for planning reform. Small house builders have been pressing for a speedier planning system, not because it will allow them to build to a lower spec, but because the current system is ill-suited for building high quality homes on the required scale to address the housing shortage.
Jeremy Blackburn, RICS Head of Policy, added his thoughts on the report, saying:
“Put simply, more needs to be done to tackle the housing crisis. We wholeheartedly agree that the private sector alone cannot solve the problem.
Affordable housing needs to be foremost in our thinking, and this is why RICS is calling for local authorities to donate land for community groups looking to deliver self-build projects. In other European countries, 50 per cent of new homes are self-build, and this could offer yet another means to get Britain building, and see more people housed.”