It’s no secret that the London property market has become increasingly difficult to get involved in over the past few years, so the Mayor of London’s latest announcement has come as a welcome relief to many. Sadiq Khan has promised that 50,000 affordable homes will be built over the next four years, as part of a £3.15 Billion housing project – the largest of its kind. Belgravia estate agent, Best Gapp says, “This is great news for Londoners who have been struggling to get a foot on the property ladder.”
Working in partnership with councils and housing associations, the Mayor’s housing team will oversee the building of new homes in all 32 London Boroughs. According to Mr Khan, the project will result in 17,500 rental properties and a further 32,000 that will combine Shared Ownership with the new London Living Rent scheme.
Introduced by the Mayor in 2016, London Living Rent is aimed at helping workers on middle incomes save for deposits that will enable them to move into Shared Ownership homes. Eligible applicants will be able to pay rent that is based on a third of the average local household income. Housing Associations will be able to offer residents a combination of housing options based on their specific circumstances and the local economy.
Planning is already well underway, and sites have been identified and purchased for 25,000 of the 50,00 that will become available. Battersea estate agent, Eden Harper said, “The Mayor has said he’s keen to resolve the London housing crisis and avoid people being priced out of living in the city. It won’t happen overnight, but it’s welcome news for local residents.”
So far, the project has already broken records at City Hall and is the biggest housing project funded to date. Plaza Estates, Knightsbridge estate agent explains, “This is the biggest project that London housing associations have worked on, which really demonstrates how urgent the housing situation has become in our capital city.
As often reported in the media, we have seen record levels of food bank usage over recent years, and with an increasingly large and ageing population the housing crisis has never been more serious. The tragic fire at Grenfell Tower has placed housing even higher on the agenda, so safety is also high on the agenda.
All homes built as a result of the new project will be built to the highest possible safety standards and will be fitted with sprinklers, fire alarms and smoke detectors. They will also be equipped with safety instructions and clear escape routes to avoid tragedies like Grenfell ever happening again.
Staff at City Hall are currently dealing with applications for approximately 30,000 homes, and almost £500 million has been set aside for further properties. The Mayor has been talking about improving the standard of living in London since he was elected in May of last year, and it looks like he’s well on the way to achieving his target of 90,000 affordable homes by 2021.
Guest Post by Property Division