5 Affordable Housing Priorities for an incoming government

A good home is the foundation everyone should enjoy, a human right that too many are living without. As architects we recognise the role we can play in helping to improve housing through design, planning and advocacy. We have come together to demand that the next government do better. We are calling for positive change that will take a collective effort to achieve. Please join our campaign.

Architects' Action for Affordable Housing

1. Prioritise Affordable Housing to deliver growth.

Policies:

1.1 National Plan: Establish cross party working group to produce 20 year National Affordable Housing Plan, to increase supply.

1.2 Minister: Elevate the importance of Housing to a Cabinet position, avoiding revolving door of Housing Ministerial appointment.

1.3 Planning: Better resources for local authority planning departments and associated design resource, with higher planning fees, with a shared vision and mission to provide more Affordable Housing.

1.4 Reward growth: Incentivise the industry with higher grant rates for higher % of Affordable Housing in each scheme.

Outcome: More Affordable Housing built, delivering economic prosperity for all.

With each Affordable Housing priority we have 4 policies, providing 20 policies for a 20 year housing plan.

2. Link Net Zero and Affordable Housing policies.

Policies:

2.1 Link social housing supply to net-zero goals. All social housing to be designed to adopt RIBA 2030 targets (operational energy/embodied Carbon/water/health & wellbeing). Ensure new housing is planned around low carbon public transport infrastructure.

2.2 Introduce a decarbonisation hierarchy. Retrofit first. Promote passive measures to reduce operational carbon.

2.3 Finance: Link energy efficiency to stamp duty: more efficient homes = less stamp duty. Equalise VAT between new builds and retrofits to level playing field.

2.4 Create incentives for regenerative building material supplies (UK forestry).

Outcome: Deliver climate change commitments through Affordable Housing.

3. Build a resilient, fair and sustainable industry.

Policies:

3.1 Establish a green building knowledge exchange with international partners to develop zero carbon construction skills and technologies capable of adoption at scale.

3.2 Grow the workforce of tomorrow by reforming the apprenticeship levy to enable a new generation of skilled construction workers.

3.3 Legislate to ensure suppliers and freelance contractors are protected from exploitative contract and payments terms.

3.4 Support regenerative material production skills to increase local supply chains and a green economy.

Outcome: A modernised and skilled housing industry, capable of delivering 1.5m homes over 5 years and more beyond.

4. Create equity in housing supply.

Policies:

4.1 Reduce Right To Buy subsidy: Steadily diminish subsidy over term or parliament.

4.2 Planned approach: Develop regional spatial plans to generate employment where housing is affordable and sustainable energy infrastructure available. Ensure Integrated urbanism- prioritise sites with social infrastructure and employment opportunities included in schemes.

4.3 Regulate: Local Plans to mandate sites mix of type, tenure, development quantum, and to address specialist needs (later living etc) and to set Affordable Housing % as a requirement not a target.

4.4 Establish a Royal Commission for the Temporary Accommodation emergency.

Outcome: Fair and equitable housing provision, the right homes where they are needed.

5. Empower a self-build and community housing drive.

Policies:

5.1 Create tax incentives for self build homes (zero stamp duty).

5.2 Establish fund for government mortgage finance for self build homes.

5.3 Allocate public land for wider adoption of self build and community housing.

5.4 Provide specific funding for community housing and to incentivise multigenerational communities and homes.

Outcome: More community focussed housing developments, more direct involvement of local communities, greater diversity in housing supply.

Join our campaign

To support our campaign and be on the list for updates, please submit below