Current hot topics related to housing include:
- Existing Right to Buy for council tenants does not apply in National Parks, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and other rural areas meeting certain criteria. Housing Associations are currently negotiating a voluntary agreement with the government to extend the Right to Buy to their properties. A number of organisations are calling for rural exemptions from the extension. A background note is available via this link: http://www.rsnonline.org.uk/images/files/Right-to-Buy-Briefing-Note-July2015.pdf
- There has been a strong emphasis over many years on requiring private housing developments to include a proportion of affordable homes. Government figures show that between 2011 and 2013, for example, two-thirds of all new affordable housing built in villages was as a result of this mechanism. In October 2015, government announced their intention to remove this requirement and replace it with a requirement to provide starter homes.
- The government’s Housing and Planning Bill was introduced into the House of Commons on 13 October 2015. This can be accessed via this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/historic-housing-and-planning-bill-will-transform-generation-rent-into-generation-buy