Category Archives: Steering Group Information

What is affordable Housing?

Affordable Housing is a term used to describe a wide variety of new properties. It needs to be understood that this is not exclusively housing aimed at people on lower incomes. In fact those living on state benefits, with low incomes, or with difficulties borrowing large sums of money would not be able to afford to occupy much of the property provided under this title. People often think that affordable housing means housing for reasonable rents or co-ownership but this is only part of what the Government regards as Affordable Homes.

This post looks at what the Government defines as affordable housing in its latest National Planning Policy Framework so that it is clear what the range of affordable options a developer may put forward are. NB I have highlighted text below to clarify.


Affordable housing for rent: meets all of the following conditions: (a) the rent is set in accordance with the Government’s rent policy for Social Rent or Affordable Rent, or is at least 20% below local market rents (including service charges where applicable); (b)
the landlord is a registered provider, except where it is included as part of a
Build to Rent scheme (in which case the landlord need not be a registered provider); and (c) it includes provisions to remain at an affordable price for future eligible households, or for the subsidy to be recycled for alternative affordable housing provision. For Build to Rent schemes affordable housing for rent is expected to be the normal form of affordable housing provision (and, in this context, is known as Affordable Private Rent).

Starter homes: is as specified in Sections 2 and 3 of the Housing and Planning Act 2016 and any secondary legislation made under these sections. The definition of a starter home should reflect the meaning set out in statute and any such secondary legislation at the time of plan-preparation or decision-making. Where secondary legislation has the effect of limiting a household’s eligibility to purchase a starter home to those with a particular maximum level of household income, those restrictions should be used.

Discounted market sales housing: is that sold at a discount of at least 20% below local market value. Eligibility is determined with regard to local incomes and local house prices. Provisions should be in place to ensure housing remains at a discount for future eligible households.

Other affordable routes to home ownership: is housing provided for sale that provides a route to ownership for those who could not achieve home ownership through the market. It includes shared ownership, relevant equity loans, other low cost homes for sale (at a price equivalent to at least 20% below local market value) and
rent to buy (which includes a period of intermediate rent). Where public grant funding is provided, there should be provisions for the homes to remain at an affordable price for future eligible households, or for any receipts to be recycled for alternative affordable housing provision, or refunded to Government or the relevant authority specified in the funding agreement.


In a nutshell the term “Affordable Homes” covers everything from social housing built specifically to rent at charges that people on lower lower incomes can afford to standard housing estate properties sold for 20% less than the average property sale price in the local area. Zoopla says the average house price in Hackleton is £373,839 at the time of writing so that could mean that houses costing over £250,000 could be described as affordable. Such properties are generally aimed at first time buyers able to afford a substantial mortgage and not what many people wanting local Affordable Housing mean.

These discounted houses tend to be the type that developers wish to incorporate in their schemes in order to maximise the return on their investment. And in order to provide a few of these cheaper houses they will wish to build many more ‘full price’ houses to ‘subsidise’ them.

Steering Group Meeting 19/3/2018

This meeting was held to focus on the forthcoming public consultation exercise. It was a wide ranging meeting and attempted to identify our approach and the actions needed.

Two further working groups were created at the meeting: One to look at creating the content of the earlier part of the communication process, and a second to look at creating a plan for the consultation campaign.

Click on Action Points below to see the full documentation of the meeting.

Action Points

Review and Mapping of Green Spaces 12/3/2018

The working group was tasked with looking at:

  1. Green areas of local importance due to their communal use and value such as the recreational area in Hackleton
  2. Areas which play a key role in preserving the separation between the villages, a concept supported by the draft Local Plan
  3. Open areas which combine historical value with village separation

The hand drawn overlay illustrates what the working group thought would meet those aims. This will now be used for discussion within the steering group and for discussion with the community.

To see the map at full screen size please double click on the map and it should open to fit your screen.

 

Piddington Views and Groupings v 1.0

A Neighbourhood Plan may consider:

Views which form a significant part of the character and setting of a Village can be considered as part of the Neighbourhood Plan. Their preservation can then be considered as part of the review of planning applications.

Building Groupings may create areas with particular characteristics which sensitive development would seek to complement.

As part of this work Maz Woolley and Vanessa Thomas met  in February 2017 to discuss key views round Piddington. Maz Woolley then took some photographs to put together two documents:

Key Views around Piddington – click on link below to see PDF document:

Views Document compressed v2 2018_2_4

Building Groupings in Piddington – click on the link below to see PDF document:

Village Settings

 

Horton Views v1.0

A Neighbourhood Plan may consider:

Views which form a significant part of the character and setting of a Village can be considered as part of the Neighbourhood Plan. Their preservation can then be considered as part of the review of planning applications.

Building Groupings may create areas with particular characteristics which sensitive development would seek to complement.

As part of this work Roy Hawkesworth took some initial views in February 2017 of Horton which can be seen in the PDF file which may be opened by clicking on the link below:

Horton Views