Boris Johnson’s recent announcement outlines radical reforms to the UK’s planning system and pledges billions to a new affordable homes programme. Managing Director, Steve Olejnik, explains what this means for property developers and buy to let landlords.
On the 30th June 2020, Boris Johnson announced the UK’s “most radical reforms to our planning system since the Second World War.” The plans unveiled aim to kickstart the housing development market, by making it “easier to build better homes where people want to live.” Boris’ reforms will make it easier to redevelop and build in city and town centre cites. But what exactly was announced?
Changes to Planning Regulations
The primary purpose of these changes is to make it easier for property developers to convert vacant buildings, mainly commercial property, into residential accommodation by removing the need for planning permission. In particular, newly empty high street shops will be easier to turn into residential property, taking pressure off green belt land in favour of brownfield sites. These changes look to come into effect from September. Hopefully, this will be good news for commercial landlords who have lost tenants recently and are looking for a way to secure their property investment future.
Affordable Homes Programme
The Government has pledged £12 billion towards the development of 180,000 new affordable homes over the next eight years. These will be available for both ownership and rent. This initiative includes a pilot of 1,500’ First Homes’, which will be sold to first time buyers at a 30% discount, forever, to maintain their affordability for future generations.
Furthermore, £400 million has been allocated to Greater Manchester, West Yorkshire, Liverpool City Region, Sheffield City Region, North of Tyne, Tees Valley and the West Midlands from the Brownfield Land Fund for the development of 24,000 homes.
In order to increase access to funding for smaller property developers, the Home Builders Fund is receiving an additional £450 million. This funding is aimed at supporting the development of more than 7,000 new homes.
This announcement is good news for both the developers and the commercial investors who have a site which could be potentially redeveloped. We will be keeping an eye on these reforms closely as more details are released from the Government.
If you’re looking to repurpose an existing investment property, or plan to develop something new, do not hesitate to get in contact with our commercial team who are very experienced at sourcing development finance for all types of projects. Call 0345 345 6788 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.