A radical overhaul of legislation is needed to bring about fundamental changes to local government finance to allow councils to build more houses. The key recommendation in ‘Room to Move’, published by the Local Government Information Unit, is that councils should be given the freedom to create a mixed economy of tenure to widen the housing choices available to social tenants.
The Unit’s report argues that it is essential for council house finance to be loosened to empower councils with financial freedoms and flexibilities to build more social housing. The report says that this will give councils more innovative ways to secure finance from the private sector and plough it back into social housing.
The Unit also proposes that local authorities should be able to leverage against their rental streams and plough back social rents and sales from intermediate housing to raise significant amounts of additional funding that could be used to tackle overcrowding.
Room to Move is available from the Unit. www.lgiu.gov.uk