At least one trade body has expressed an apparent scepticism about whether the rebranding of the Department of Communities and Local Government will actually achieve anything to help issues in the rental and sales markets.
Yesterday the government revealed that the DCLG would become the Department of Housing, Communities and Local Government; although the department already had housing within its portfolio of responsibilities, the subtle change appears to show greater emphasis on housing.
Sajid Javid, the former DCLG secretary of state, remains in that position in the newly-renamed department - so at least that means the issue of housing now has a minister of Cabinet status.
However, the National Landlords Association says that while it welcomes the fact that housing strategy appears at the forefront of government thinking, “we hope that this works out to be more than just rebranding exercise, and that Mr Javid and his department will look to address the housing crisis by genuinely working across all tenures, not by fixating on building more homes.”
Javid himself, in a statement released on the DHCLG website yesterday evening, says: “Building the homes our country needs is an absolute priority for this government and so I’m delighted the Prime Minister has asked me to serve in this role. The name change for the department reflects this government’s renewed focus to deliver more homes and build strong communities across England.”