The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, delivered his Summer Economic Update earlier this week, with a focus on investment and growth following the Covid-19 pandemic. It follows on from the Prime Minister’s speech from last week – Build Build Build statement. We caught up with Rob Boughton, Thakeham Group, CEO to find out more.
Rob Boughton said:
It was a bold announcement. But these unusual times require brave ambitious actions.
We know that there is a housing policy paper coming and we hope it will continue to focus on the environment, and sustainable placemaking. The chancellor’s announcement suggests that carbon neutrality remains high in his thoughts, with a new £1bn programme to make public sector buildings, including schools and hospitals, across England greener and helping the county meet Net Zero by 2050.
As an infrastructure-led placemaker, Thakeham are no strangers to creating community buildings in our developments. Last year we launched a new crusade to become Carbon Neutral by 2025. It is positive news that the Government stance continues to mirror our own vision for the planet.
With a further £50m funding package for social housing sector landlords to pilot new approaches to low-carbon retrofitting of social homes; and green home grants for low income households – UK housing will become some of the most environmentally-friendly in the world.
Our Partnerships business’s work with Housing Associations and local councils has highlighted to us the nation’s urgent need for affordable homes. Therefore, we welcome the Chancellor’s decision to extend the Affordable Homes Programme with a new multi-year settlement worth £12bn. This increase to the current five-year Affordable Homes Programmes will see the Treasury provide a further £38bn in public and private investment to help more people into homeownership and those at risk of homelessness.
The Chancellor’s stand out decision to raise the threshold for Stamp Duty on main residencies until March 2021 will also catch the eye. It is a generous yet short incentive aimed to refresh the housing market. This is welcome news for all homebuyers, particularly as it brings an even wider range of quality homes in the South East within the budget of homeowners who want to get moving.