Build To Rent likely to feature prominently in planning framework revamp

Experts suggest that Build To Rent is likely to be heavily promoted when the government announces its latest revamp to the National Planning Policy Framework today.

Property consultancy Cushman & Wakefield says the government is likely to unveil the latest NPPF draft today, with BTR to the fore.

“The importance of Build To Rent as an additional driver to the housing market will be specifically referenced, with a recognition that [this sector] may look at alternative ways of delivering affordable housing through ‘affordable rental’ provision” explains Ian Anderson from Cushman & Wakefield’s Planning and Development team.

He says other elements to look out for in the revamped policy include an expectation of more cooperation between neighbouring local authorities on planning and housing issues, a focus on brownfield development with the consequence that the Green Belt will remain heavily protected, and a potential reduction in the duration of planning consent from three years to two years.

The government has already leaked to the Sunday Times one part of its announcement - that higher targets for new homes will be set for areas where house prices outstrip annual earnings.

“For the first time it will explicitly take into account the market prices," Housing Secretary of State Sajid Javid told the paper.

"If you are in an area where the unaffordability ratio is much higher you will have to build even more. It will make clear to councils that this number is a minimum, not a maximum."

He said councils would also be held to account on house-building promises they make.

Javid said councils that failed to meet targets would be stripped of the right to decide what is built within their boundaries, with inspectors making decisions instead.


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