Housing Secretary James Brokenshire MP has just confirmed a government partnership with Barclays Bank to provide loan financing valued at £1 billion. The money will be used to assist small builders and developers so that the thousands of new homes that England needs can be delivered more quickly.
Financial support of £5 million to £100 million per firm will be provided to small builders and developers who can prove their experience and dedication to building quality new homes in addition to a good track record of delivering complicated projects on time and within budget.
Homes England, the delivery agency for the government, will oversee the funding, which will emphasise a broader housing market. At present only ten companies build nearly two-thirds of the country’s new homes.
The Housing Delivery Fund will facilitate the construction of new homes, such as rental flats, retirement living, and social housing. It will also encourage more innovation in housing delivery, such as urban regeneration initiatives and brownfield land.
The Housing Secretary said that his priority was to start building the homes that the UK needs. The new partnership between Barclays and Homes England is another vital step by providing small builders and developers with access to the funds needed to get housing developments completed. He called it a terrific opportunity to not only build more homes but also promote innovative new approaches to design and construction.
Barclays Chairman John McFarlane said that there was a pressing need to build more high-quality homes across the UK. The £1bn fund will support this outcome by showing housebuilding firms that financing is available for housing projects that support this goal. He added that he was pleased to be working with the government to support more housebuilding in Britain.
Sir Ed Lister, Chairman of Homes England, said that his organisation was established to play a more active role in the property market and make it easier to deliver new homes.
The Housing Delivery Fund is greeted as evidence of Barclays’ support for the residential sector and will provide a new means of funding for small builders and developers to deliver more affordable homes throughout England.
The agreement with Barclays is part of a wider government commitment to speed up the delivery of affordable homes in England. There has been a clearly stated ambition to accomplish 300,000 new homes a year by the middle of the next decade. 217,000 homes were built in 2017, so the target represents England’s biggest increase in housing for nearly a decade.