Its not more land or houses its the tenure!!!

Andrew Whitaker, planning director of the Home Builders Federation, told the programme that land needed to be made available alongside additional council powers. He said: Of course what we must see is additional land coming forward. We can’t just substitute tenure, so we can’t just use the land that the private sector would have used to develop housing.

Not surprisingly the HBF want the opportunity to build more houses and make more profit! But we dont need more houses we need to increase the share of existing new build which are affordable including public sector!

If members of the HBF built houses for need not greed (the luxury end of the market etc), there would be sufficient housing for all.

We need to tell builders what to build not allow them to exploit the situation.

In Cornwall more houses are built than are required to meet local need, most are for people moving to Cornwall, second/holiday homes etc.


Local housing need being met?

To reflect the site’s location on the boundary of Cubert and Perranzabuloe parishes, the housing need of both areas has been
Taken into account. Perranzabuloe has a substantial need, with 211 Households listed on Cornwall HomeChoice with a local connection
and Cubert has 34 households with a local connection.

There are some questions to be answered here – are the figures above all of those on the HCR or those in actual need?
[Previous analysis has suggested that most people on the HCR are already houses, therefore there is not a need for 245 extra houses in these two parishes!].

The planning permission includes the following: A financial contribution of £306,432 towards the construction or extension of education infrastructure facilities at Cubert CP Primary School.

But if those in housing need already live in the area,(we assume that most do), the children are already being provided for in the area so there is no need for extra school capacity?

What this really tells us is that most of the houses will be for people moving into the area and the extra capacity is to meet the extra (non-local) demand!

Penhale – an odd decision or anything goes?

This is an unusual proposal for a major mixed use development in place of existing redundant buildings on a former military camp in a sensitive rural coastal location close to the village of Holywell. The site is adjacent to the Penhale Dunes Special Area of Conservation (SAC) Natura 2000 site that is protected to ensure the long-term survival of Europe’s most valuable and threatened species and habitats. The outer edges of the site that are
undeveloped also form a small part of the Penhale Dunes SSSI. The proposal raises a range of complex issues, and the possibility of harm to the environment particularly in relation to ecology.

There are potential adverse visual impacts on the local landscape as a result of the urbanising effect of this new housing and other development within an area physically separated from the existing settlement at Holywell. [Strategic Planning Committee report]

The Penhale development is somewhat unusual in that it is in an area detached from any existing urban area; it is located where the environmental impact could be considerable and the visual impact high.

Years ago such a proposal would have been quickly rejected – not related to existing settlement; an intrusion into a rural area, yet now its gets the go-ahead. Presumably the existence of old MOD buildings is deemed sufficient although its isolation would seem to offset this!

Cutting democracy in Cornwall!

The questions the Boundary Commission still won’t answer, October 2, 2017 bwdeacon Cornwall Council, Local elections

Following my letter to the Local Government Boundary Commission last week seeking clarification as to why Cornwall Council had been singled out for an unprecedented level of cuts in its democratic representation, today I received the following brief reply from the Commission.

Thank you for your submission. It has been received and will be considered by the Local Government Boundary Commission for England. We will let you know if and when a new phase of consultation for this review opens.

For more:

New homes at Penhale Camp

Comparo plans to tear down more than 90 former MoD buildings and replace them with 132 homes, four business units and 12.5 acres of recreational open space, and also convert a farmhouse into two dwellings. The developer, which has been waiting on planning permission since 2015, was also seeking the go ahead to build a larger building for business use at a later date. Cornwall Council’s strategic planning committee approved the scheme at a meeting on Thursday (September 28).

Concerned residents had called the plans “absolutely outrageous” following a consultation that took place in March. A total of 22 objections were also lodged on the Cornwall Council planning website, with no supporting comments. The area surrounding the camp, between Perranporth and Newquay, is a designated Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), leaving residents concerned that development could be “damaging and destructive” to wildlife, the coastal path and the protected Penhale Dunes. As well as concerns over the environmental and wildlife impact, concerns were also been raised over sewage, flooding, traffic and parking.

Buy-to-let – impact on housing costs

The Government, in common with many commentators (who usually repeat what they have heard rather than analyse information themselves), fail to look at the demand side of the supply/demand equation when it comes to housing. An interesting insight into the impact of the Buy-to-let sector was made by the National Housing and Planning Advice Unit in 2008, who stated that the sector had led to an increase in house prices. The question is what is the impact now?

Taking the last period that a comparison can be made in quarter 2 2007, the actual mix adjusted house price was then £183,000 and the estimated house price without buy-to-let lending was £169,000. This implies that buy-to-let lending had increased prices by up to £13,000 (or 7 per cent) over and above what they would otherwise have been.

The growth of buy-to-let investment has impacted on mortgage costs, with buyers of the average priced home on a 100 per cent mortgage paying around £1,190 rather than £1,100 a month as a result of house prices being 7 per cent higher.
However, buy-to-let has also helped to increase the size of the private rented sector and helped to keep rents low. This has provided much needed affordable accommodation for those who do not wish or cannot afford to become homeowners.

National Housing and Planning Advice Unit, Affordability still matters, July 2008.

Local housing need – what exactly is it?

The DCLG consultation paper states –

The Government argued in the housing White Paper that a standard approach to assessing local housing need would be simpler, quicker, and more transparent. This would speed up the time taken to prepare Local Plans and give local communities greater control of development in their area.

The phrase ‘local housing need’ sounds as if housing targets for an area are designed to meet the needs of the local population. The targets are therefore justifiable. How could anyone object to meeting the housing needs of the local community?

Yet in reality the targets are not based on or designed to meet ‘local housing need’ at all, they are based on meeting a combination of need and demand.

We can identify the various components of housing wants:

Local need – households within an area who are in need of housing

Local demand – households within an area who are housed but would like a different or extra house

External demand – people living outside the area who wish to move for say lifestyle reasons

Investment demand – people generally living outside the area who wish to purchase property for investment purposes. This could include buy to let and holiday lets

Holiday home demand – people generally living outside the area who wish to purchase property to use as a second home. They might also see the option as an investment