Starter Homes programme: 50,000 first-time buyers sign up in a month, says Cameron

The Prime Minister said: 'We’re going to build 200,000 new homes, 20 per cent cheaper than normal'

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Indy Politics

More than 50,000 prospective first-time buyers have signed up for the Government’s new Starter Homes programme in its first month, David Cameron has announced.

The scheme will help under-40s get on the housing ladder by allowing them to buy a newpurpose-built home at a 20 per cent discount. Some 52,225 have already registered, which the Conservatives hailed as showing “massive public support.”

The Prime Minister, who launched the initiative last month, said: “Starter Homes is a landmark new policy. We’re going to build 200,000 new homes, 20 per cent cheaper than normal.”

 

He added: “Conservatives want more people to own their own home. Home ownership goes to the heart of our political beliefs. It’s simple: we believe having a home of their own gives people and families independence; it helps people stand on their own two feet; and it’s one of the ultimate symbols of a country where if you work hard, you can get on. It boils down to backing aspiration, and that’s why helping everyone who works hard own a home of their own is a key part of our long-term economic plan.”

A Starter Home will cost no more than £250,000 outside London (or £450,000 in the capital), with resale and letting restrictions for the first five years. The policy applies in England only.

More than 40 housebuilders have pledged their support for and are now considering how to bring forward land so they can start building the  first homes  later this year.

Housebuilders will be able to develop under-used or unviable brownfield land free from planning costs and levies. In return, they will offer homes at a minimum 20 per cent  discount to under-40s buying their first home.

Emma Reynolds, the shadow Housing Minister, said: “The Tories’ plan is failing working people. Warm words from David Cameron about home ownership will ring hollow for those young people and families who have been priced out of home ownership over the past five years.”

She added: “We are in favour of building starter homes, but it is not clear how the Government is going to deliver these homes 20 per cent cheaper than market price. Under this Tory-led Government, we’ve seen the lowest levels of housebuilding in peacetime since the 1920s, home ownership is at a 30-year low and there's a record number of young people living at home with their parents into their 20s and 30s.”

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