Budget 2015: The Implications for Housing Briefing Paper

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, delivered his first post-election budget on 8th July 2015. It contained a number of significant and controversial announcements many of which are relevant to housing. The purpose of this briefing paper is to summarise the budget with particular reference to its implications for housing, to identify the response of the sector and to provide appropriate comment.

The most significant proposals are to reduce rents for housing associations and local authorities by 1% a year for the next four years and to oblige housing associations and local authorities to charge 'near market' rents to tenants whose incomes exceed £30,000 a year (£40,000 a year in London). The reductions in rents will reduce income below the level that is assumed in business plans and that was assumed in the self-financing settlement for local authorities. This has called into question the ability of social landlords to continue their development programmes or even to maintain viability.

The briefing paper includes sections on:

  • Introduction
  • Overview: Rents, High Income tenants, Right to buy, Welfare, Local Government, What has NOT happened
  • Rent Reductions: Effects on Development, Regulation, Valuations, Credit Ratings, Borrowing Capacity, Capital Financing costs, Affordable Rent, Local Authorities, Public Finances; Possible Exemptions; Potential for Legal Challenge
  • Rents for High Income Tenants – ‘pay to stay’
  • Response of the Sector: Chartered Institute of Housing, National Housing Federation, Place Shapers, Chartered Institute of Public Finance & Accountancy, Shelter & Joseph Rowntree Foundation
  • Conclusions

Your copy can be freely downloaded from HERE


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