What does the property industry think of the new planning proposals?
New plans to invest in construction, building houses and relaxing planning laws meets a mixed response
Alex Johnson has been part of The Independent's online team since 2007. He has been writing about microarchitecture on his internationally-acclaimed Shedworking blog since 2006 and is the author of Shedworking: The Alternative Workplace Revolution. His latest book is Bookshelf, published by Thames & Hudson.
Friday 07 September 2012
The new housing and planning package aims to deliver up to 70,000 new homes, offer new opportunities for first time buyers, and make it easier to make some home improvements. The hope is to create around 140,000 new jobs.
David Newnes, director of LSL Property Services, owners of Your Move and Reeds Rains, commented: “The housing sector welcomes much needed change as the new housing minister steps into the limelight. The key issues hampering first time buyers are deposit affordability and the lack of housing stock at appropriate prices. The Government’s announcement of a £280m extension of its shared equity scheme First Buy is therefore extremely encouraging. And the plan for an increased new homebuilding programme is music to our ears.
"But we need the cooperation and support of mortgage lenders if these measures are going to kick-start the housing market. Appropriate credit needs to be available to first-time buyers and the wider market generally and the Government should ensure they take suitable steps to ensure this happens.”
However, Jonathan Haward, chairman of County Homesearch said allowing extensions and conservatories to be built without planning permission would not boost the construction industry nor would it get the economy moving. Indeed, he argued that allowing unchecked extensions could even detract from the value of neighbour’s property if it’s of a low standard, ugly or not in keeping with the existing property.
"The coalition is just tinkering and while this may give a boost to local house builders it will do nothing significant to improve the wider economy or the housing market," he said. "More radical moves are needed to get people to move. Many homeowners are locked in their homes because capital growth has been insignificant and they still do not have the funds to move up a rung."
Jamie Lester, Head of Haus Properties, added: “Whilst the planning changes sound like good news on one hand by helping to create jobs and housing, my concern is that if people don’t have access to funding to buy or improve their homes, the initiatives are as good as useless! I personally have planning permission to extend my home, but my lender is making my life hell in order to release a little equity, even though my property has £200,000 of equity in it. With a growing family, this leaves me stuck in a rut!
“Although relaxing red tape is also welcomed, the changes to allow people to extend their properties up to 6m or 8m without planning permission are a concern, especially in urban areas. This could cause neighbourly issues with other people’s light and enjoyment of their own properties affected. And what will happen when the rules change again after a year? Obviously, the devil will be in the detail, but I do think it will lead to a lot of confusion and some serious disputes!”
A more positive response came from Shelter’s Chief Executive Campbell Robb who said: "This package of measures is an important step towards delivering the homes we need, not only to provide a vital and urgent boost to the economy but to address this country’s housing shortage that’s affecting millions of lives.
"It’s absolutely crucial for the many families and young people struggling with high housing costs or trying desperately to get on the housing ladder, that the Government delivers on its guarantee that these proposals will see more affordable homes built."
Philip Selway, Managing Partner of The Buying Solution, said: “I think that most people will be pleased to see changes that will cut down on the planning process, although for London in particular, it maybe that the new relaxed planning rules will see garden/outside space more easily lost to kitchen or playroom extensions, for example. This could also, I suppose, lead to an increase in disputes between neighbours due to the noise, building work, parking suspensions and general inconvenience caused.
“For the prime country market it may be a slightly different story as, for many, Listed building consent will still be required to extend although the main effect perhaps, will be a further shrinking of the property market. The planning changes could easily encourage those who are planning to move purely to acquire additional space for growing families, may well chose to renovate and extend their homes instead. More than understandable certainly but the knock-on effect will mean that even fewer houses will be brought to the market”.
A five-bedroom terraced house on the popular Peterborough Estate, ideally located for both Eel Brook Common and South Park
A state-of-the-art farm-building conversion on the former Cliveden Estate, with 11,420sq ft of internal space, cinema and wine cellar
A three-bedroom, 15th-century cottage with original features in the picturesque village of Sissinghurst
A six-bedroom terraced house with large south-facing roof terrace, cinema room and wine cellar
A new seven-bedroom home built in Queen Anne-style with swimming pool and parkland views in Mortimer
A listed, four-bedroom farmhouse in the rural hamlet of Rushall with detached barn, four acres of gardens and paddocks
A first-floor flat with two bedrooms, a spacious reception room and communal grounds in a leafy part of London
A three-bedroom flat with a spacious rootop terrace and balcony, accessed from a private gated courtyard
A Grade II-listed pile with six bedrooms, stables and 39 acres of grounds in Standlake
A two-bedroom flat with boutique hotel-style interiors, close to the foodie haunt of West End Lane
A two-bedroom flat in a beautiful old vicarage, with many original features, close to the city centre
A three-bedroom 16th-century home with an aga kitchen, private gardens and heated outdoor pool, in Hadleigh
A three-bedrom home in sought-after Queen's Gate Mews, with Italian marble-finished bathrooms
Surrounded by glorious countryside in the village of Udimore, sits this impressive four-kiln oast and barn conversion
A five-bedroom house in the picturesque village of Kettlewell, north Yorkshire
An 18th-century former coaching inn with original staircase, open fireplaces and beams throughout
A Grade II-listed Georgian town house with three bedrooms and a south-facing courtyard, near Arundel Castle
Feel on top of the world at this über chic penthouse on the 37th floor of one of Europe’s tallest blocks.
A Grade II-listed Victorian villa with six bedrooms and two further cottages, all with spectacular sea views
A grade II-listed, Georgian cottage with mature 50ft garden, perfect for summer entertaining
A magnificent Georgian pile with turrets, seven bedrooms, a heated pool and four acres of gardens
Fairoak Farm has five bedroom suites, gym, outdoor swimming pool and golf course
Chic two-bedroom river-fronted flat with a private lift that delivers you directly to your home
A spectacular seven-bedroom Tudor pile, once owned by Henry VIII, with 18 acres of land
A seven-bedroom Georgian property previously used as a picturesque wedding venue
A split-level flat in a church conversion with two en suite bedrooms and 1,200sq ft of living space
A three-bedroom bungalow situated behind an impressive stone wall, £645,000
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
Chapel House is a former vicarage with nine bedrooms in the beautiful Upper Wye Valley
A five-bedroom B&B and separate owner's accomodation with potential for conversion
Enjoy summer by the Thames in this two double-bedroom converted warehouse in Rotherhithe village
A one-bedroom, luxury apartment with private gym and concierge service in Moorgate
A four-bedroom house in Hermitage Gardens with three reception rooms and landscaped gardens
A seven-bedroom Grade II-listed property with a separate self-contained apartment
A five-bedroom Victorian house with three reception rooms and galleried landing, £695,000
A six-bedroom farmhouse with five acres of land in a former cloth-making village
A secluded seven-bedroom detached house with large private garden, £490,000
A three-bedroom cottage overlooking Sarratt village green with open fires and solid oak floors
A three-bedroom maisonette flat in a Grade I-listed, Georgian townhouse in a sought-after location
A one-bedroom apartment located within a private gated development, north of Turnham Green
Look forward to a brighter future at two-bedroom Sunny Cottages, ideal for Londoners looking to downsize
A three-bedroom red-brick cottage with outbuildings and pretty gardens, £200,000
This three-bedroom flat within a former textile factory spans the corner of the fourth floor and has a balcony
A charming four-bedroom Oxfordshire cottage with oak floors and chunky-beamed ceilings, £465,000
A beautiful one-bed flat in a sought-after portered block, with access to Norland Square communal gardens
A one-bedroom flat within a Sixties school conversion with high-spec design and open-plan kitchen, close to Lambeth North Tube, £435,000
A 17th century four-bedroom house, with open fireplaces, cellar and pool, £600,000
Newcastle manager taunted again as his side loses to Stoke
Life & Style blogs
Isis, we are told, is a 'clear and dangerous threat to our way of life'. I’m sorry, but I just don’t buy it
Exclusive: 'Putin's Russia has been my biggest regret,' says Nato's outgoing Secretary General
'Women, walk wherever you want' posters taken down in Stamford Hill following 'unacceptable' signs separating men and women
There’s no excuse for Dave Lee Travis’s behaviour, but we need to keep a sense of proportion
Mark Reckless becomes second Tory MP to defect to Ukip in a month
Should gay sex be illegal? 16% of Britons think so
- 1 Five-year-old Iris Grace is raising awareness of autism through her extraordinary paintings
- 3 The Simpsons death: Creator Al Jean would 'kill himself' before a character like Homer or Lisa
- 4 British man raped while urinating in bushes at Oktoberfest beer festival in Germany
- 5 Pope Francis assures atheists: You don’t have to believe in God to go to heaven
- < Previous
- Next >
NEGOTIABLE: Austen Lloyd: TRUST ACCOUNTANT - KENTIf you are a Chartered Accou...
£85 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: randstad education are curre...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Group: You must:- Speak English as a first lang...
£17000 - £18000 per annum: Randstad Education Group: If you are a committed Te...