5 Affordable Housing Priorities

Discover the top 5 affordable housing priorities that an incoming government should focus on. Learn about the policies and strategies that can help create a 20-year housing plan.

1/1/20252 min read

A good home is the foundation everyone should enjoy, a human right that too many are 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 us.

5 Affordable Housing Priorities for an incoming government:


Achieving growth and value through quality affordable housing


  1. Enable Affordable Housing construction to deliver growth.

Outcome: more Affordable Housing built, delivering economic prosperity.


i. Establish cross party working group to produce a 20 year National Affordable Housing plan, to be published within 6 months of new government.

ii. Elevate the importance of Housing to a Cabinet position. Avoid revolving door of Housing Ministerial appointment.

iii. Enable better resourcing of local authority planning departments and associated design resource, with higher planning fees, with a shared vision and mission to provide more Affordable Housing.

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

  1. Better quality Affordable Housing to deliver Net Zero.

Outcome: Deliver climate change commitments through Affordable Housing.


i. Link social housing supply to net-zero goals. All social housing to be designed to achieve UN Sustainable Development Goal 11, "make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable", adopting RIBA 2030 targets (operational energy/embodied Carbon/water/health & wellbeing). Introduce a decarbonisation hierarchy. Retrofit first. Promote passive measures to reduce operational carbon.

ii. Transition to low carbon lifestyles by ensuring new housing is planned around low carbon public transport infrastructure.

iii. Link energy efficiency to Stamp Duty: more efficient = less stamp duty.

iv. Equalise VAT between new builds and retrofits.

  1. An industry fit to deliver the homes we all need.

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


i. Invest in people & jobs, specifically construction quality control/monitoring skills training and apprenticeships, to create a modernised and upskilled housing industry to create the green, healthy and quality social housing we need.

ii. Green construction skills: provide incentives for low cost training for green construction skills.

iii. Develop an industry standardised approach to circular economy material passports.

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

  1. Creating equity in housing supply.

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


i. Local plans to mandate mix of type and tenure and address specialist needs such as later living and temporary accommodation.

ii. Affordable homes % set as a requirement not a target, with a plan led approach that sets development densities for sites.

iii. Integrated urbanism- Ensure suitable sites prioritised with social infrastructure and employment opportunity included in schemes. Develop regional spatial plans to generate employment where housing is more affordable and green energy infrastructure readily available.

iv. Reduce Right To Buy subsidy: steadily diminish subsidy over term or parliament.

  1. Enable communities and families to build themselves.

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


i. Tax incentives for self build homes (zero stamp duty).

ii. Establish fund for government finance for self build homes.

iii. Fund Pilot schemes of co-housing and community housing schemes.

iv. Incentivise multigenerational communities and homes.

boy in white shirt holding brown glass jar
boy in white shirt holding brown glass jar