Understanding the Jargon
We formed the Faversham Community Lant Trust to increase the availability of “really affordable housing” in Faversham. This would be a form of social housing. Shelter reports that across England, over 1.2 million households are on the social housing waiting list.
Shelter is the UK’s national campaign of homeless people; they have some useful, clear definitions.
“Social housing gives people a home. It’s cheaper to rent than privately rented housing and usually provides a long-term tenancy, giving renters the chance to put down roots. Social landlords tend to be councils or housing associations.”
“Social rents are lower than so-called ‘affordable’ rents which are set at up to 80% of the market rate.”
It can be difficult to understand how to apply for social housing. We have some advice pages which hope to make this easier for you.
Affordable Housing is defined by central government as
Housing for sale or rent, for those whose needs are not met by the market (including housing that provides a subsidised route to home ownership and/or is for essential local workers) and which is made available for rent or purchase at 20% below local market value. more
Affordable Housing is not beeing being delivered by developers.
“Housing charity Shelter examined how ‘viability assessments’ reduced the number of affordable homes being built in 11 local authorities across nine cities in England.
The research shows that when the loophole was used in the last year, some 2,500 affordable homes (79%) were lost from the number required by council policies.
Viability assessments allow developers to reduce the number of affordable houses they build on their site, if they can show building them risks reducing their profits to below 20%. It means many developers face no penalty for over-paying for land because they can recover the costs by reducing their commitments to building new affordable homes.
The research sampled: Birmingham, Brent, Bristol, Cambridge, Leeds, Leicester, Manchester, Newcastle, Oxford, Kensington and Chelsea, and Southwark. But the assessments are being used right across the country so the annual figure of lost houses is likely far higher.” more