Chancellor Philip Hammond has revealed that Wednesday’s Budget day will include an announcement of an additional 300,000 new home constructions per year. That said, the chancellor also underscored the fact that neither this strategy nor any other represents a “single magic bullet” to boost housing supply.
The Government Won’t Just “Pour Money In.”
U.K. ministers plan to speed up the rate of new home development by accelerating the planning permission process. Beyond granting permissions more quickly, they also plan to provide small building firms with greater support, said Hammond.
Still, the Labour Party does not yet feel that ministers have solved the problem entirely. They “still have no plan to fix the crisis.”
The chancellor spoke on the Andrew Marr Show on the BCC and made several points regarding the upcoming Budget Day. They included
• A contradictory statement in which he acknowledged that the government recognizes the current unemployment numbers of 1.4 million British citizens, after having previously said that “There are no unemployed people” when discussing the topic of tech threatening the jobs of human workers.
• That ministers had no intention of withdrawing their effort to legalize a precise Brexit date.
• That when it comes to Brexit negotiations, the government was “on the brink” of “some serious movement forward.”
• That “Armageddon” will not occur within the health service if it does not receive the £4 billion in additional funding called for by the head of NHS England.
Additional U.K. Housing is a Necessity
The housing shortage in the U.K. is expected to be among the top foci of the Budget. Hammond has faced significant pressure to make home ownership more affordable for first-time buyers attempting to save enough for their deposit. Hammond called the current situation in which young people are struggling to purchase a new home to be “not acceptable.” He promised to present a plan the government would follow to maintain its “pledge to the next generation.”
At the same time, he has not yet confirmed a commitment to the £50 billion that Communities Secretary Sajid Javid demands for the financing of a house-building drive. Instead, Hammond’s promise was in the form of meeting a 300,000 annual new home target within England.