Prime Minister David Cameron today launched his house-building crusade in which he said his main mission was to turn the so-called ‘generation rent’ into ‘generation buy’.
Speaking on the final day of the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester, Mr Cameron announced a shift in policy which would see rules around affordable houses for rent swept away and replaced with incentives to build affordable houses to buy.
The relaxing of the planning laws, he said, would help developers build 200,000 new ‘affordable’ homes by 2020.
A deal has also been struck with housing associations to allow tenants to buy their homes under the right to buy scheme.
Mr Cameron said: “For years, politicians have been talking about building what they call “affordable homes” – but the phrase was deceptive.
“It basically meant homes that were only available to rent. What people want are homes they can actually own.
“After all, the officials who prepare the plans for the new homes, the developers who build them, the politicians who talk about them – most of these people own the homes they live in.
“Don’t they realise other people want what they’ve got – a home of their own?”
Under the scheme, houses must must be 20% below the market rent and capped at £450,000 inside London and £250,000 outside.
He added: “From Generation Rent to Generation Buy, our party, the Conservative party [is] the party of home ownership in Britain today.”
But before Mr Cameron had even taken to the stage at the Manchester Central exhibition centre, the new policy was being attacked as unworkable.
Housing charity Shelter claimed average earning families will be priced out of these new “affordable” homes in 58% of local authorities by 2020, while families earning George Osborne’s new National Living Wage will be priced out in 98% of the country.
In a speech littered with standing ovations, Mr Cameron also launched a stinging attack on new Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, accusing him of ‘hating Britain’.
He said: “Thousands of words have been written about the new Labour leader but you only really need to know one thing: he thinks the death of Osama bin Laden was a ‘tragedy’.
“No. A tragedy is nearly 3,000 people murdered one morning in New York. A tragedy is the mums and dads who never came home from work that day. A tragedy is people jumping from the towers after the planes hit.
“My friends, we cannot let that man inflict his security-threatening, terrorist-sympathising, Britain-hating ideology on the country we love.”
Image courtesy of BBC via. Youtube, with thanks.