Mayor of London Kn Livingstone has said tough targets on the number of affordable homes to built across the capital are responsible for an increase of 4,686 new shared ownership homes and an increase in social rented homes.
Figures to be published by the Mayor’s office today will show that in 2006/7 4,686 new “intermediate” or shared ownership homes were built in the capital – an increase of nearly two thirds on the previous year, and three times the level achieved in 2001/2.
Mr Livingstone said the figures were proof that those calling for London’s council’s to have the power to ignore his targets which call for 50% of all new homes to be ‘affordable’ “are so wrong.”
The Mayor said “Giving up the 50 per cent target would encourage and reward poor performing councils at the expense of those who are delivering and at the expense of Londoners looking for their first home to own.”
“It would inevitably mean fewer homes both for affordable shared ownership and for affordable renting.”
Mayor Livingstone will also set out new proposals for big further increases in the number of shared ownership opportunities for Londoners. Plans in his statutory housing strategy will call for 21,000 more shared ownership homes over the period 2008–2011, better targeting of shared ownership opportunities so they are more affordable to those on lower incomes who cannot get on the housing ladder and a quadrupling the number of family sized (3 bedroom plus) shared ownership homes to increase opportunities for families.
Mr Livingstone said he has “agreed with government that they will provide the funding that is needed for this big new increase in home ownership opportunities for lower income Londoners. Now we must keep the pressure up on all those responsible for delivery.”
“The one thing that would do most damage to the ambitions of many Londoners for a new shared ownership home would be the foolish suggestion that we should abandon the targets that have already delivered better performance and thousands more new home owners.”