LGA launches housing commission

2 Dec 15

The Local Government Association today launched a Housing Commission to consider ways for councils to increase the supply of homes.

The group, to be led by the LGA housing board and supported by an expert panel, will consider how town halls can contribute to building the 230,000 new homes England needs.

Under its terms of reference, it will consider new ways councils can enable investment in new homes, as well as their placemaking role fostering prosperous places and communities. The potential for housing to support tenants into employment will also be examined, as will how housing can be used to help manage the ageing population and help reduce social care and health service costs.

A call for evidence has been issued today looking for examples of good practice that have successfully addressed those issues, and asking what is needed to build on those successes.

Councils, their partners, organisations and individuals are invited to contribute their evidence by 26 February 2016 to LGAhousingcommission@local.gov.uk. The group’s findings will then be brought together in a report to be published next spring and presented at the LGA’s annual conference in June.

Launching the commission, LGA housing spokesman Peter Box said: "We're working with government to ensure housing and planning reforms support council efforts to build more homes and the Housing Commission we are launching today will investigate how the government and councils can help deliver houses to solve our housing shortage.

"Councils must be able to play a lead role in building the homes we desperately need, and building the homes in a way that create prosperous places and growth, help people into work and positively adapt to an ageing population. This is the best way to meet local and central government ambitions for our communities, to reduce waiting lists and Housing Benefit, keep rents low and help more people live long and happy lives."

The experts advising the committee are:

  • Catherine Hand, partner, Trowers and Hamlins
  • Chris Wood, partner, Altair
  • Dave Simmonds OBE, chief executive, Inclusion
  • Prof Jo Richardson, director, Centre for Comparative Housing Research, De Montfort University,
  • Neil Revely, chair, ADASS Housing Network
  • Sue Adams OBE, chief executive, Care and Repair England
  • Will Colthorpe, Argent LLP and chair of the British Property Federation's development committee