Housing

New housing developments slammed for 'mediocre and poor' design

21/01/2020

Three-quarters of new housing developments should not have been approved due to their ‘poor’ or ‘mediocre’ design, a new report from campaigners has found.

Manchester becomes 'early adopter' of Hackitt Review

20/01/2020

Manchester City Council has joined three other councils to become an ‘early adopter’ of the recommendations made in the Hackitt Review.

Preparing for new regulations

20/01/2020

Chris Proctor warns housing providers must enact change now to improve compliance and not wait for the regulators.

Council abandons joint housing plan after inspectors question its ‘soundness’

20/01/2020

A third west of England council has voted to withdraw from a joint regional plan for housing and growth.

Council prepares to approve £306m investment strategy

20/01/2020

A multi-million pound investment strategy that will see the delivery of 2,000 new homes is set to be approved by Oldham Council.

Number of build-to-rent homes rises over 50% mark

17/01/2020

New figures reveal that the total number of newly completed build-to-rent homes across the UK, excluding London, increased by over 50% last year.

Councils secure funding to tackle criminal landlords

17/01/2020

Councils across England are to share more than £4m to target criminal landlords and letting agents.

Former housing minister warns of ‘a new generation of slum housing’

16/01/2020

A former housing minister has warned that national planning policy needs ‘a radical rethink’ in order to promote the wellbeing of communities.

Two million private renters made ill by housing worries, poll reveals

15/01/2020

Worries over private renting is causing millions of people to become physically ill or sick, a new survey has revealed.

Councils as modular building champions

15/01/2020

Ruby Giblin calls on councils to use their access to public borrowing to help grow modular building.

Funding boost for garden towns and villages

14/01/2020

The Government has allocated £6m to deliver up to 200,000 new homes in new locally-led garden towns and villages.

Local housing allowance ‘freeze’ ended

14/01/2020

The Government has announced that it will end the four-year freeze on the local housing allowance (LHA) which charities blame for a rise in homelessness.

Tackling grant complaints

13/01/2020

Paul Smith outlines five ways that a local authority can reduce the number of complaints it receives about disabled facilities grants.

Liverpool criticises 'short-sighted' rejection of its landlord licensing scheme

13/01/2020

The Government has been branded ‘short-sighted’ after it refused Liverpool’s application to continue its landlord licensing scheme.

Council chiefs call for permitted development right to be ‘scrapped’

13/01/2020

Local authority leaders have warned that communities are potentially losing out on thousands of affordable homes due to office conversions which bypass local planning offices.

Housing benefit errors pushing families into homelessness, ombudsman warns

09/01/2020

Families are facing the prospect of becoming homeless due to the way some councils are handling housing benefit appeals, the ombudsman has warned today.

Scottish councils granted powers to regulate short-term lets

09/01/2020

Local authorities in Scotland are to be given new powers to regulate short-term lets where they decide this is in the interests of local communities.

Council ‘vows’ to defend local plan

09/01/2020

Sevenoaks District Council has vowed not to withdraw its draft local plan despite continued pressure from the planning inspector who they accuse of ‘ignoring evidence’.

Only one in 10 support ‘new towns’, study finds

08/01/2020

Just 10% of the UK population believes that the construction of new towns is the best way to tackle the UK housing crisis, according to a new report.

Councils still being held back from building more homes finds report

07/01/2020

Local authorities are still being held back from providing more homes, a new report examining the future for council housing has argued.

Report calls for end of 'age apartheid'

07/01/2020

Radical action is needed to create ‘a country for all ages’ by 2030, according to a report published today.

Lack of housing benefit forcing families to give up food to pay rent, charity warns

07/01/2020

Families are being forced to give up food shopping in order to pay their rent, a charity has warned today.

Council chiefs welcome £4m ‘rogue landlord’ fund

03/01/2020

Local authorities have welcomed a funding commitment by the Government aimed at cracking down on criminal landlords and letting agents.

PM pledges £260m to ‘eliminate’ homelessness

24/12/2019

The Prime Minister has pledged £260m to help local authorities prevent homelessness and rough sleeping.

Welfare reform drives ‘sofa surfing’, council chiefs warn

23/12/2019

Council leaders have called on the Government to adapt welfare reforms as research finds changes to the benefits system have been a driver of ‘sofa surfing’.

Welsh government bans combustible cladding

23/12/2019

Welsh government has banned the use of combustible cladding on high rise buildings following the Hackitt review into fire safety after the Grenfell tragedy.

Visionary housing for the elderly

19/12/2019

A project in London has linked private and public sectors to provide quality care for older people alongside a block of luxury apartments, Mark Whitehead says.

Council chiefs call for welfare reform to tackle homelessness

19/12/2019

Local authority leaders have called on the new Government to adapt welfare reforms so that they protect families at risk of becoming homeless.

Rogue west London landlord fined over £400,000

18/12/2019

A landlord in west London has been ordered to pay £430,000 for illegally renting out her property to 15 tenants.

Rough sleeping in Greater Manchester down by nearly 40%

18/12/2019

Mayor of Greater Manchester urges the Government to do more to help the homeless as figures reveal rough sleeping has fallen by 37% in one year.

Around 280,000 people will be homeless this Christmas, charity warns

18/12/2019

A new study has revealed that 280,000 people are recorded as homeless in England – an increase of 23,000 since 2016.

Khan urges Londoners to support rough sleepers this winter

17/12/2019

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has called on residents of the capital to support his winter rough sleeping campaign ahead of Christmas.

In a nutshell: What the election result means for local government

13/12/2019

With the Conservative party securing its biggest majority since the 1980s, what does this mean for local government?

Rogue landlord fined for ‘endangering lives’

11/12/2019

A landlord in Birmingham has been successfully prosecuted and ordered to pay close to £20,000 for breaching housing regulations.

Top 100: Our most popular local government stories of 2019

10/12/2019

From calls to a 10% pay rise for council staff to declaring a climate change emergency, here is our countdown of the 100 most popular stories on LocalGov during 2019.

Providing sanctuary for refugees

10/12/2019

Neil Merrick finds out what councils across the country are doing to welcome and resettle Syrian refugees.

Garden Communities set to deliver over 400,000 homes

09/12/2019

Garden city developments are set to deliver over 400,000 new homes, the equivalent to a city the size of Birmingham, new research has revealed.

Council’s homelessness service suffers ‘serious weaknesses’

09/12/2019

A housing regulator has launched an inquiry to investigate ‘serious weaknesses’ in Glasgow City Council’s service for people who are homeless.

It’s party time

05/12/2019

Paul Marinko tries to help the sector navigate the web of policy commitments for local government on offer after 12 December.

Councils could lose millions in utilities repayments after court ruling

04/12/2019

Local authorities could be facing repayments worth millions of pounds to council tenants in excess water charges, after a High Court ruling last week.

London council sues contractors for £130m over ‘fire safety failings’

29/11/2019

Camden Council has launched legal action against a group of contractors over ‘multiple fire safety failings’ that led to the evacuation of the Chalcots Estate two years ago.

Lib Dems unveil plans to tackle homelessness

28/11/2019

The Liberal Democrats have set out a raft of plans to end rough sleeping if they won the General Election.

New grants to support Housing First services

27/11/2019

Five housing providers have been awarded £450,000 to help support people facing chronic homelessness and multiple disadvantages.

Private renters overspending £11bn a year on rent

26/11/2019

Private renters in England are spending £11bn more a year on rent than they can afford, new research has shown.

Tories pledge to create ‘more homeowners’

22/11/2019

The Conservative Party has pledged to help renters buy their home and to give first time buyers discounts.

Nearly £11bn of London property ‘sitting empty’

22/11/2019

Over 22,000 properties are sitting empty across Greater London, new research has revealed.

Labour promises biggest council house building programme for decades

21/11/2019

Labour has pledged to create a 'housing revolution' with the biggest council house building programme since the Second World War.

Survey warns housing developments are 'built too quickly'

21/11/2019

Planners and developers are failing to consider the infrastructure needed to support new house building, according to a report produced with the help of architects.

Families forced into homelessness by ‘unaffordable’ housing

20/11/2019

A charity has warned families are being pushed into homelessness as figures reveal nine in 10 homes are unaffordable to families relying on housing benefit.

Council to buy back estates from developer

19/11/2019

Hammersmith and Fulham LBC is to take back ownership of two housing estates 12 years after they were sold off by a previous administration.

Calls for councils to be given more power over empty properties

15/11/2019

A major union has called for councils to be allowed to take over empty properties to house people on waiting lists.

Temporary accommodation costing councils £1bn a year

15/11/2019

A dramatic increase in the amount of money councils spend on temporary accommodation for the homeless is 'shocking yet entirely preventable', according to leading campaigners.

Council closes property company to focus on building 300 new homes

13/11/2019

An arms-length local authority property company is to be wound up when its first project has been completed in the New Year.

Government urged to revitalise key worker housing

12/11/2019

The Key Worker Housing initiative should be revitalised to help public sector workers access affordable homes, a think tank has argued.

Council sets out plan to build 1,000 social homes

12/11/2019

Nottingham City Council has committed to building or buying 1,000 council houses and creating thousands of new jobs over the next decade.

Thousands of people living in 'unregulated' housing

07/11/2019

Tens of thousands of vulnerable people are living in unsafe and unsuitable conditions, according to new research.

LGA reveals successful applicants for its housing advisers programme

05/11/2019

Fourteen local authorities are to receive funding to pay for independent expertise to help overcome housing challenges in their local areas.

Councils given extra £4m to tackle rogue landlords

05/11/2019

Councils have been awarded an extra £4m in new funding to take action against criminal landlords.

No starter homes have been built yet, investigation finds

05/11/2019

None of the Government’s planned ‘starter homes’ have yet been built as legislation has not been implemented, a report by the National Audit Office (NAO) has found.

Charity calls for commitment to deliver 90,000 social homes a year

05/11/2019

New figures show that nine in 10 private renters are left on council housing waiting lists for years due to a lack of social homes.

Whitehall to pay Yorkshire company £30m to build ‘modern, green homes’

04/11/2019

The Government yesterday announced it will be paying £30m to a construction firm in Yorkshire to make the North of England the ‘world-leader in the creation of modern, green homes’.

Chancellor announces £250m ‘infrastructure revolution’

01/11/2019

More than £250m in funding will be made available to provide infrastructure for thousands of homes, the chancellor has said, in a move condemned as a pre-election ‘publicity stunt’.

London businesses support devolving housing powers to councils

31/10/2019

Businesses in London have urged Whitehall to give local authorities more power to deliver infrastructure and housing in their communities.

Councils offered £10m fund to ‘kick start’ new towns

28/10/2019

The Government has released £10m to help councils develop locally-led proposals to deliver more ‘new towns’.

Six local authorities sign housing deal with Homes England

24/10/2019

The Government has launched a nearly £40m fund in an attempt to kick start a ‘green housing revolution’ in the north of England.

Whitehall commits £19m for young people leaving care

23/10/2019

Young people leaving care have been promised better housing, healthcare and employment opportunities in a new government scheme.

Joint venture unlocks ‘biggest brownfield’ site in the Black Country

21/10/2019

Industrial land in Sandwell is set to be the site of a 750-home community after a deal was struck by the council and the West Midlands Combined Authority.

Charity calls for ‘whole Government approach’ to health of young people

16/10/2019

Whitehall should transform its policies across housing, transport and education in order to secure the future health of today’s young people, charity says.

Queen's Speech 19: Whitehall to ‘implement’ new building safety standards

14/10/2019

The Government plans to ‘implement new building safety standards’ in order to prevent a repeat of the Grenfell Tower tragedy, according to the Queen’s speech.

Queen's Speech 19: Brexit, health and devo at the heart of Government plans

14/10/2019

Brexit, the NHS and devolution are at the heart of the next round of Government legislation as outlined in the first Queen’s Speech today.

Only 10% of recent homes built on the Green Belt are 'affordable'

14/10/2019

Only one in ten homes built on land released from the Green Belt over the past decade are considered ‘affordable’, a new report has found.

Cost of B&Bs for homeless people rockets

14/10/2019

Councils are being forced to spend more than £90m a year on placing homeless people in bed and breakfasts, council chiefs have warned.

Trial launched into providing a stable home for ex-offenders

11/10/2019

A scheme to give prisoners a place to live when they are released is now being trialled in Leeds, London and Bristol, it has been announced.

A targeted approach to tackle homelessness

10/10/2019

The Government's objective of ending homelessness by 2027 can be achieved through a more targeted and long-term approach, experts told Mark Whitehead.

Public call for more investment in housing benefit

10/10/2019

Three quarters of the public believe that housing benefit should increase in line with rents, according to a new poll published to mark World Homeless Day.

Norwich council estate wins top architecture prize

09/10/2019

A council estate in Norwich has been named as the UK’s best new building.

UK marked by ‘extreme’ inequalities, study shows

08/10/2019

A new study from University College London has warned that the UK is characterised by ‘extreme’ inequalities both between and within cities and regions.

Cambridge’s pioneering cohousing scheme

07/10/2019

Laura Sharman visits Marmalade Lane – Cambridge’s first cohousing development and the largest scheme of its type in the UK.

Local Housing Allowance 'inadequate' for family homes, research warns

07/10/2019

More than nine out of ten family homes for private rent are too expensive for people on housing benefit, new analysis has revealed.

Sussex council green lights 3,000 new homes

07/10/2019

A planning committee in Sussex has given the green light to a construction project that will see thousands of new homes delivered in the area.

Rent caps needed to curb housing crisis, report says

04/10/2019

A think tank has called for local leaders to have the power to cap rents in high-cost areas.

Oxford to lose out on millions due to planning rule changes

03/10/2019

Oxford City Council has warned that the city could lose out on hundreds of new council houses due to changes in the national framework which guides planning policy.

Glasgow faces legal battle over homeless services

03/10/2019

Shelter Scotland has launched a legal battle against Glasgow City Council over failures in its homelessness service.

Councils attack plans to extend permitted development rules

01/10/2019

The Government has announced plans to extend permitted development rules to allow developers to convert commercial buildings into homes without planning permission.

Fit for purpose homes

27/09/2019

With a new report showing the amount of money spent on the repair and maintenance of public housing has hit a 20-year low, Mark Robinson explores how councils can ensure their homes are fit for purpose.

The safety of social housing

26/09/2019

Neil Merrick explores how councils are improving the safety of social housing two years after the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

Scotland sees a 15% increase in its housing supply

24/09/2019

Scotland has seen an increase in its housing supply for the sixth year in a row, new figures reveal.

Housing crisis affecting 8.4m people in England

23/09/2019

The number of people in England who need social housing is nearly double the number of people on the government’s official waiting list, a new report has warned today.

Council chiefs warn ‘boom’ in barn conversions undermines local planning

23/09/2019

Local leaders have called for scrapping of the permitted development right after new figures suggest rural developments might be missing out on vital services.

Council chiefs call for devolution process to be ‘reignited’

20/09/2019

The Government must 'reignite the devolution process' to give all parts of England more powers and funding, council leaders have demanded.

Processes for allocating social housing excluding ‘vulnerable’, think tank warns

18/09/2019

The rules and processes designed to decide who gets access to social housing could be failing people in greatest need, housing experts warn.

Casey calls for support to tackle homelessness

16/09/2019

Homelessness expert Dame Louise Casey has issued a call to arms to tackle the rising tide of homelessness around the world.

Government to reintroduce Domestic Abuse Bill

13/09/2019

The prime minister has confirmed that his Government will reintroduce a Bill to help tackle the ‘horrific crime’ of domestic abuse.

£150m housing scheme to go ahead on former Toys R Us site

12/09/2019

Housing and new offices are set to go ahead on a former Toys R Us site in Southampton.

APSE to launch Local Government Commission

10/09/2019

A new commission to develop a practical vision for local government in 2030 will be launched by APSE later this month.

Council to help deliver over 80 ‘cutting-edge’ properties

10/09/2019

A district council in Cambridgeshire has welcomed the Government’s decision to build what they describe as ‘cutting-edge, designer council homes’ in Northstowe.

Burnham announces £6m for homelessness scheme

09/09/2019

Mayor Andy Burnham has announced a £6m funding package for the second phase of Greater Manchester’s A Bed Every Night scheme.

Review into sprinklers in high-rise homes

06/09/2019

The Government has announced plans to reduce the height of tower blocks where sprinklers must be installed.

Who’s planning for more?

04/09/2019

One year on from the launch of the new National Planning Policy Framework planning, Sophie Innes has concerns about its progress.

Council pension fund calls on housebuilders to improve transparency

04/09/2019

One of the biggest local government pension funds has called on housebuilding companies to improve the way they report environmental, social and governance issues.

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