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Last updateFri, 20 Oct 2017 3pm

HBA: Help to Buy is a symbol of failed housing policy

On 1 October, as the Conservative Party Conference kicked off in Manchester, the Government announced an extension of Help to Buy for new build homes with an extra £10 billion of funding over five years.

The House Builders Association (HBA) – the house building division of the National Federation of Builders (NFB) – believes that extending Help to Buy will not help to solve the most acute housing crisis in over seven decades.

The UK needs to build at least 800 homes each day to address demand, but only 190,000 homes were built in 2016/17 – a fraction of the 300,000 needed. The Government should be implementing policies that encourage the construction of new homes, rather than opting for measures that will only stoke already increasing demand.

Rico Wojtulewicz, policy advisor for the HBA, said: “SMEs may require this extension of Help to Buy to reduce the risks with planning and land costs. This is because councils typically favour developments with Help to Buy and smaller developers can use the scheme to speed up the planning process. 

Wojtulewicz continued: “Help to Buy is a symbol of failed housing policy. While it is helping people afford homes, the Government should be laser focused on building more homes and not just reheating policies that inflate demand. Enabling SME house builders to build more homes is the only way to address the housing crisis in a sustainable way that ensures growth across all regions.”