Affordable housing in London: Sadiq on track to hit new building target as number of homes started doubles in a year

Sadiq Khan today claimed that he was “on track” to hit his target of work starting on at least 17,000 affordable homes in London during the current financial year.

Figures from the Mayor, who has been pledged £4.8 billion of Government funding to support affordable house building in the capital, show that 12,546 homes got underway in the first nine months up to December, double the level of the previous year.

Of these 41 per cent were for social rent and 20 per cent were being built by councils.

However, only 4,228 affordable homes were actually completed during the period. The figures also revealed that only tiny numbers of affordable homes are being built in some boroughs. Work started on just three in Kensington & Chelsea, 11 in Bromley and 24 in Redbridge.

Sadiq Khan: the mayor says he is on track to meet his affordable homes building starts target for the year but only 4,228 homes have been completed (PA)

Mr Khan said: “Delivering the genuinely affordable homes that Londoners so desperately need has been one of my top priorities over the last four years. Therefore, I’m delighted that today’s stats show we’re firmly on track to deliver our ambitious target of starting 17,000 genuinely affordable homes this year.”

“Social housing plays a vital role in binding our city together and I’m proud that councils across London have bought into my vision and helped us deliver more genuinely affordable homes for Londoners than at any time since City Hall took responsibility for social housing.

“We can’t solve the housing crisis overnight, but this shows what we can do when Londoners work together. Now it is time for the Government to recognise what we have achieved, step up and give us the support and funds to keep building the homes London urgently needs.”

But Tom Slingsby, chief executive of property developer Southern Grove said the low level of completions was alarming.

He said: “The provision of affordable homes in London is collapsing before our eyes and needs to be urgently addressed.

“The latest update to the statistics for the fourth quarter of 2019 shows that London is on course to see 5,637 affordable homes completed come the end of March this year.

“This would be a significant fall on the 7,544 completed in the year to March 2019. It’s easy to blame a crisis of confidence thanks to so much political turmoil, but the need for greater cooperation between planners and house builders in the capital should not be underestimated.”


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