The Impact of the Covid Crisis on 5YHLS and Development Rates

Planning reports that an inspector finds that a council has no 5YHLS because of depressed development rates from the Covid crisis.

Many LPAs wil replay if th crisis has an impact on the supply side so will it on demand.

Many will argue the housing need hsnt gone away, just the ability of mny households to afford new housing.

The department needs to think through the impact.  There is now a risk that EVERY LPA will fail the housing delivery test.  That would be ridiculous.

The department needs to be consisent.  What is the aim?  If it is to hot 300k a year, by when and what means?  If the intention is to give a short period of grace but still signal get on with it in  terms of long term targets then say so.

A sensible balanced policy would be to extend temporarily to 7YHLS in 2020 and 6YHLS in the Planning White Paper, but signal that the revised OAN method will still seek to  ensure that household formation is now suppressed by low housebuilding.  this will require a staged approach.  Pressure getting stronger over time with the housing delivery test applying only to the worst performers now and giving moderate performers time to increase housing in local plans, including the elephant in the room, overspill need from the major cities.

 

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