Thursday, June 13, 2024
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Labour unveils new housing policy with 'Freedom to Buy' scheme offering permanent mortgage guarantees – LabourList


Keir Starmer and Angela Rayner are calling Labour the “party of homeownership” as they pledge to permanently sustain and expand the Conservatives’ mortgage guarantee scheme, rebranding it ‘Freedom to Buy’.

The party says the plan could help 80,000 more young people onto the housing ladder over the next five years. It would make permanent the current mortgage guarantee scheme, which helps people get a mortgage with low deposits but had been due to expire in June 2025.

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Labour leader Keir Starmer said: “Our changed Labour Party will be on the side of the builders not the blockers, to get Britain building again.

“My Labour government will help first-time buyers onto the ladder with a new Freedom to Buy scheme for those without a large deposit, and by giving them first dibs on new developments.

He added: “My parents’ home gave them security and was a foundation for our family. As Prime Minister, I will turn the dream of owning a home into a reality.

Labour’s wider strategy for housing also includes high-profile planning reforms, aimed at getting 1.5 million more homes built over the course of the next parliament.

The party has also pledged to reform compulsory purchase rules and tax foreign buyers to fund more planning officers.

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Deputy leader Angela Rayner said: “Labour’s plan would get Britain building again with a new scheme to help young people get a mortgage and with a housing recovery plan, creating a generation of new towns and unlocking economic growth across Britain. 

“Labour is the party of homeownership, and the only party serious about building the homes Britain needs. We will deliver the change needed and end the Tory chaos.”

It comes as ONS data from the 2021 census suggests growing numbers of young adults are living with their parents.

Barratt Developments chief executive David Thomas said: “We welcome proposals that could help more people buy their first home in a challenging market.

“In order to support more people to buy their first home, it is also important that we improve the current planning system, which includes setting housing targets in local plans and recruiting more skilled planners, so local authorities and housebuilders can build the much-needed, high-quality and energy-efficient homes the country needs.”

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