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ARLA and NAEA comment on the Government’s housing white paper

Tuesday 07 February 2017

NAEA and ARLA comment on the various areas covered in the Government's housing white paper.

David Cox, Managing Director, Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) and Mark Hayward, Managing Director, National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA), comment: “We welcome today’s Housing White Paper; thinking about homes across tenures is really important and it’s reassuring that the Government is seeking a holistic view of all housing needs. The White Paper raises many of the significant issues the housing sector is facing. The important next step is that the industry puts forward robust solutions and that Government listens and takes these forward to really make a difference.”

Supply and demand

Mark Hayward, Managing Director, NAEA says: “Only 32,000 affordable homes were built in 2016, and this is totally unacceptable, especially given the number of homes we really need. We’ve had years of empty promises now and this has exacerbated the problem resulting in the price of properties being out of reach for so many.

“The announcement the Government plans to diversify the market by opening it up to smaller builders who embrace innovative and efficient methods is great and could go some way in helping deliver a vast number of homes quickly. However, it’s vital the Government considers the cost of building modular homes and understands these could remain unaffordable and unsuitable for FTBs.”

Greenbelt and ancient woodland

Mark Hayward, Managing Director, NAEA says: “We are not advocating building on ancient woodland; however, we do believe the greenbelt policy should be reappraised. Let’s not allow objections to building on the green belt help further deteriorate the housing crisis.”

Downsizing incentive 

Mark Hayward, Manging Director, NAEA says: “The Government’s plans to help older people move at the right time and in the right way to free up homes for other buyers is an important issue and something we believe would make a big difference. Around two fifths of homes in the UK are owned by those aged over 65, who have no desire to move as they do not want to sustain the costs or stress involved with moving. They are considered “bedroom blockers” and are the main reason why there are a large number of homes with two or three spare bedrooms. We look forward to working with the Government on how it aims to use the existing housing stock in a more efficient way.”

New focus on renting tenures

David Cox, Managing Director, ARLA says: “We are pleased that the Government has signalled a move towards a mixed tenure approach to house building and recognised that owner-occupation is not the only option available for those looking  for a home. It is important that we have a housing market that works for everyone, not just for those who own their own property.”

Encouraging institutional investment

David Cox, Managing Director, ARLA says: “ARLA welcomes the Government’s plans to encourage more institutional investment to boost the number of properties available for rent. Any proposals that increase supply should be applauded.

“However, this approach should not be at the expense of small landlords who make up the bulk of the private rented sector. Experience has shown that, even in countries where institutional investment in the PRS has been encouraged, it still only makes up a small part of the sector. Small landlords are vital to the health of our rental sector.”

Three year tenancies

David Cox, Managing Director, ARLA says: “ARLA welcomes any attempt to improve stability in the housing market and it is important that tenants feel that they are secure in their homes and are able to plan for the future. We welcome the Government’s approach to this, and have been working closely with DCLG on proposals for incentivising longer term tenancies; after all, it is in the best interests of landlords, tenants and agents to have long, well maintained tenancies. It is a fallacy that a regular churn of tenants benefits anyone.”

Powers to stop unscrupulous landlords

David Cox, Managing Director, ARLA says: “We are highly supportive of the powers contained in the Housing and Planning Act as they are targeted at those that bring the industry into disrepute and we encourage the Government to bring them into force as soon as possible.”

ENDS

For further information contact:

ARLA and NAEA Press Office

Tel: 020 7566 9777

E-mail: propertyprofessionals@lansons.com

About ARLA

ARLA is the UK’s foremost professional and regulatory body for letting agents; representing over 8,500 members. Our members operate to professional standards far higher than the law demands and we campaign for greater regulation in this growing and increasingly important sector of the property market. By using an ARLA Licensed agent, consumers have the peace of mind their agent will provide a professional service and their money is safeguarded by a Client Money Protection scheme.

About NAEA

National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) is the UK’s leading professional body for estate agency personnel, being part of a group representing 16,000 members who practice across all aspects of property services both in the UK. These include residential and commercial sales and lettings, property management, business transfer, auctioneering and land.


NAEA is dedicated to the goal of professionalism within all aspects of property, estate agency and land. Its aim is to reassure the general public that by appointing an NAEA member to represent them they will receive the highest level of integrity and service for all property matters. The NAEA is a sister organisation to the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA).