Construction Site

LGA calls for construction of 100,000 social homes a year

The Local Government Association (LGA) has warned that 100,000 social homes a year need to be built as part of the recovery from Covid-19.

The report, published by the LGA yesterday (June 21) says a ‘post-pandemic building boom’ is needed to deliver housing fit for social care, health and other key workers and their families who have been fighting the crisis.

Councils must be given the powers to build thousands more council homes where they are desperately needed, helping to ‘spearhead the national recovery from the virus”, according to the LGA.

‘Delivery of Council Housing – Developing a Stimulus Package Post-Pandemic’ sets out a range of key issues and recommendations for Government, including bringing forward and increasing the £12bn extension of the Affordable Homes Programme, Reforming Right to Buy to give councils 100% of the receipts from the sale of homes and increasing the capacity of the building industry with a skills and job strategy.

By delivering these homes, the LGA says that it will not only support the construction industry following a downturn in recent months but also bring significant benefits to the national economy.

Research shows that investing in a new generation of social housing could return £320bn to the nation over 50 years with every £1 invested in a new social home generates £2.84 in the wider economy.

Cllr David Renard, LGA housing spokesman, said:

“As the nation comes through the biggest crisis we have faced since the Second World War, we owe it to the health, care and other essential public service workers, who have risked their lives to keep the country running to provide them with affordable, high-quality homes fit for heroes.

“The Government should let councils take charge of the housing recovery, by giving them the powers and tools to build more of the affordable homes the country desperately needs.

“A programme of 100,000 social homes a year would not only meet a third of the Government’s house-building target, but it would generate a range of social and economic benefits.

“Now is the time for a genuine renaissance in council house-building that reduces homelessness, gets people off the streets for good, supports people’s wellbeing and is climate-friendly.”

 LISTEN: Ep. 16 Cllr Nick Forbes - Net zero and an inclusive economy

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