Gavin Barwell Housing Minister

Government selects starter home priority areas

Housing minister Gavin Barwell has announced the first partnerships with local authorities focused on the delivery of homes for first-time buyers, including deals with several councils in the North West.

The 30 local authority agreements have been made on the basis of their potential for early delivery, which Barwell said will enable construction to begin on brownfield sites by the end of the year.

These partnerships have been established under the Government’s £1.2bn Starter Homes Land Fund.

The councils selected in the North West are:

  • Blackburn with Darwen Council
  • Blackpool Council
  • Cheshire West & Chester Council
  • Greater Manchester Combined Authority
  • Liverpool City Council
  • Pendle Council
  • South Ribble Council

The homes will be built exclusively for first-time buyers between 23 and 40 years old, at a discount of at least 20% below market value.

Barwell said: “This government is committed to building starter homes to help young first-time buyers get on the housing ladder.

“This first wave of partnerships shows the strong local interest to build thousands of Starter Homes on hundreds of brownfield sites in the coming years. One in three councils has expressed an interest to work with us so far.”

The Starter Homes Land Fund was set up to prepare suitable land for quality starter home developments, to begin before 2020.

Each local authority partnership will work closely with the Homes & Communities Agency to identify and take forward further land opportunities for the fund.

In addition, the Homes & Communities Agency has today issued a call seeking expressions of interest from local authorities who are interested in using its land to deliver homes, which will potentially see up to 15,000 homes started on surplus public sector land this parliament.

The £1.2bn Starter Home Land Fund was established in April 2016 to support the acquisition, remediation and de-risking of further suitable land for developments. Some 71 sites across the country have already received investments, including land at Bury, Stockport, Trafford, and South Ribble.

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