Government needs to boost house building

Robyn Hall

March 12, 2013

In its budget submission to the Treasury, the BSA has outlined a package of measures it believes will boost growth in the housing sector and the wider economy.

Adrian Coles, director-general of the BSA, said: “House building is an important growth engine for the economy and we have a desperate need for more homes. The government must do more to make this happen.”

Coles said one measure would be to create of a Minister of State for Housing with a cross-departmental mandate with the objective being to co-ordinate and deliver more holistic and ambitious policy-making in this area.

The association also wants process of releasing land with planning consent to be faster to further boost the pace of home building.

To improve the take-up of housing schemes, the BSA recommended that a UK-wide, consumer-facing housing portal be created to give the public easy access to information and advice.

And it wants the government to follow the lead of the Scottish Parliament and the Welsh Assembly, both of which are looking at the structure of Stamp Duty.

The BSA renews its call for this tax to move from a slab structure to a marginal basis which would be fairer to consumers and promote a healthier housing market.

An option being considered in the sector is a Housing ISA where funds deposited would be allocated directly to fund housing development and purchase.

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