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28 October 2012

Architects call for UK housing revolution

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by Gill Montia

Architects call for UK housing revolution

A new report from the Future Homes Commission, backed by the Royal Institute of British Architects, sets out a radical approach to the UK housing crisis, claiming that 300,000 homes could be built each year without an extra penny of Government spending.

The recommendations include local authorities taking the lead in providing rental and shared-equity accommodation by pooling their assets, including their pension funds.

The report is calling for a three-fold increase in the number of new homes being built every year (from the current 100,000) and the setting up of an independently managed £10 billion local housing development fund.

The fund would be financed by the largest local authority pension funds pooling 15% of their assets to invest in rental and shared-ownership housing.

There would also be a greater focus on design in all new homes, making them fit for future generations and therefore attractive to UK and international institutional investors.

Chair of the Future Homes Commission, Sir John Banham, comments: “We need to increase massively the number of quality homes being built for many years to come, but also to develop communities which enhance the quality of life for both new residents and those living in existing communities nearby.”

He adds: “All this has to and can happen without any additional government funding.”

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