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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Councils told to back PRS

Councils have been told to get behind the private rental sector by a new report entitled : Making Renting Viable.

It essentially calls for Local Authorities to use their power as landowner to promote new private rented housing by using their land to promote new private rental accommodation.  Councils have for decades being using their land holding to promote 'socially responsible schemes' and regeneration.  However, traditionally this has meant a stand off between private schemes for sale or an element of social housing.  Developers who are looking at selling their property have traditionally resisted any social housing element because of their private buyers not wishing to live with social housing tenants.  Private sector tenants I'm sure do not have the same stigma.  In this respect it is a great idea.

The built in resistance

The problem to make this idea fly is that Councils particularly Labour councils are fundamentally a posed to the private rental sector.  The solution to overcome this inertia is to require each local authority to meet a target for Private Rental provision.  Unfortunately, this doesn't sit well with the Coalitions idea of localism.  Interesting idea but I fear that the 'implementation gap' may well be insurmountable for many Local Authorities.  The Telegraph also offers their view on the Report.

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