الأربعاء , يونيو 17 2020

Labour to pledge new homes fund

Construction site worker adds roof tiles to a housing development

Housing is a key election issue in this campaign

Banks would be encouraged to fund 125,000 new homes for first time-buyers in England under a Labour government, Ed Miliband will say.

The scheme would be based on the first-time buyer ISAs announced by George Osborne which sees the government top up money people save towards a deposit to buy their first house.

Labour says it would invest the money in new housing developments.

The Conservatives said the scheme was “ill thought-through”.

Mr Miliband will set out further details of his housing policy at a rally with party activists in Warrington later.

The Labour leader will attack the government’s record on house building, which he will say has fallen to its lowest level in almost 100 years and made it harder for people to own homes.

“We’ll get Britain building again. Our plan is the first real plan for house building in a generation,” he will pledge.

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In other general election campaign news:

  • The Lib Dems have unveiled plans for a £2.5bn care fund to help keep people out of hospitals through improved GP access, a wider range of services in doctors’ surgeries and better healthcare in nursing homes. The money is part of the £8bn extra a year the party has promised to spend on the NHS by 2020
  • Culture Secretary Sajid Javid is to outline Conservative plans to protect children from online hard-core pornography
  • SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon has denied newspaper reports that she would prefer to see David Cameron as prime minister rather than Ed Miliband

Housing is a key election issue, and the parties have made pledges to boost the supply of homes across the country and make home ownership more achievable.

In his last Budget, Chancellor George Osborne unveiled the first-time buyers ISA which is designed to help people get a foot on the housing ladder.

It allows the government to top up by £50 every £200 a first time buyer saves for a deposit.

Labour supports the policy but says further action is needed to address the “under supply” of homes.

Ed Miliband

Mr Miliband will say he wants to “give hope back to young people”

Under its plan, any bank or building society that offered such an ISA would be required to invest the money in housing.

This would unlock £5bn to invest in a Future Homes Investment Fund to build 125,000 new homes between 2015 and 2020, according to Mr Miliband, and a Labour government would underwrite the investment.

The party has already committed to building 200,000 new homes in every year of the next Parliament but this scheme is aimed at getting the policy moving.

Developers would have to give priority to first time buyers and anyone saving under the ISA scheme when the new homes are completed.

housing

Policy guide: Where the parties stand

Chancellor George Osborne sounded a warning about Labour’s plan.

“The Help to Buy ISA will support over a million first-time buyers achieve their dream of earning their own home – and with one badly thought-through policy, Ed Miliband would put all that at risk. It would undermine home ‎ownership and harm savers,” he said.

“After just one week of the campaign, Ed Miliband has confirmed he’s anti-savers, anti-business and anti-aspiration. He’s just not up to the job,” he added.

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