Government plans to help housebuilding welcomed by City Council

Winchester City Council has welcomed news that the Government intends to speed-up housebuilding by raising the housing revenue account borrowing cap.

The Ministry for Housing, Communities & Local Government plans to raise the cap by up to £1billion in areas of high affordability pressure for local authorities that are ready to start building new homes.

The news will boost Winchester City Council’s plan to build 600 new homes in the next three years.

Since 2012 160 homes have been completed, with 51 properties currently being built. In addition there are 78 further properties where construction will start later this year.

There will also be two consultation events in July for new schemes which will provide more than 100 new homes in the District.

Winchester City Council Leader and Portfolio Holder for Housing, Cllr Caroline Horrill said:

“I am delighted that the Government has raised the HRA borrowing cap. It is no secret that the Winchester District, like much of the South East, has expensive house prices but this will help us continue our work delivering schemes that are affordable so local people can continue enjoy the benefits of living in the Winchester District without having to find homes in less expensive areas.

“We will look at how this money can benefit our schemes going forward, and we will be submitting a bid in the next two months.”

Homes England has also announced an increase of £1,670m in the social and affordable housing programme for England

Local authorities in England outside London will be able to bid for increases in their caps from 2019 to 2020, up to a total of £500m by the end of 2021 to 2022. The government states that the programme will help to deliver an increase in council housebuilding.