The Prime Minister today announced how he intended to boost the economy with a huge £5billion recovery plan. Boris Johnson revealed the news to the nation as he promised to help Britain “build, build, build” its way out of the coronavirus crisis. The new plan included a lifeline for first time buyers trying to get on the property ladder.
However, Boris has dubbed the new plan “Project Speed”, as he planned to fast-track £5billion of spending to give the country a boost.
He said: “We will build the homes, fix the NHS, solve social care, to tackle the skills crisis, to mend the indefensible gap in opportunity, productivity and connectivity between the regions of the UK.To unite, and level up.
“To that end, we will build, build, build. Build back better, build back greener, build back faster.”
Boris revealed that there would be £12billion of funding for a new homes plan that will support up to 180,000 new affordable homes for ownership and rent over the next eight years.
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Part of the plan includes accelerating the pilot of its First Homes scheme, which offers a 30 percent discount on thousands of homes to first time buyers.
He said that the “Project Speed” plan will mean that new building rules will allow empty buildings to be transformed into new homes without the red tape, to get buyers moving faster.
The property industry has welcomed the news. Managing Director of estate agent Barrows and Forrester, James Forrester, commented: “Today’s announcement by the Prime Minister is a rallying call to commerce, industry, the property sector and finance, to piggy-back his huge spending plans and literally put Britain back together again.
“We seem set to spend our way to fiscal health and to ensure, in particular, that there is finally a genuine home-building revolution to match similar investment intentions in the transport, education and health sectors.
“What a welcome relief this is and at just the right time.”
Boris said that the plan will help young people to get onto the property ladder.
“We will build fantastic new homes on brownfield sites and other areas, with better transport and other infrastructure, that could be suitable and right for development,” he said in his rallying speech.
“We will address that intergenerational injustice and help young people get people the housing ladder the way their parents and grandparents could. We will build better, we will build greener, and faster.”
The First Homes scheme means that the discount remains with the property, so that once it is sold, the next buyers also benefit from the discount.
However, some property experts have shared their concerns that there is nothing for the older generations in the new deal.
Phil Bayliss, CEO of later living at Legal & General and chairman of Guild Living, said: “To truly build back better we must ensure that housing policy works for everyone. This means fixing decades of underinvestment in housing for our older generation.
“Reforming the planning system to encourage long-term investment in retirement communities would allow the UK to finally start meeting the housing needs of people in later life. This would offer choice to those who want to downsize, enable older people to lead healthier lives for longer by reducing pressure on health services, and kickstart the housing market by freeing up family homes.”
Despite this, the Prime Minister vowed that he had no intention of bringing back years of austerity in order to cope with the crash.
“We cannot continue simply to be prisoners of this crisis,” Boris added.