New £2.3bn Housing Infrastructure Fund for councils will unlock building

A new Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF) has opened for bids from English local authorities to help create the infrastructure needed to unlock house building.

New £2.3bn Housing Infrastructure Fund for councils will unlock building

Launched by Communities Secretary Sajid Javid at the recent Local Government Association Conference in Birmingham, the £2.3 billion Housing Infrastructure Fund has the potential to unlock 100,000 new homes in areas of high demand. The fund was originally announced in the 2016 Autumn Statement.

The fund is available to councils to finance the physical infrastructure projects necessary to bring on housebuilding, such as bridges, roads and energy networks, which otherwise hold housebuilding back.

Investment will be available to fund new schools, healthcare facilities and digital infrastructure that is necessary for new communities, while alleviating pressure on existing public services.

Like much of current Government focus, there is an expectation on speed of delivery, with councils expected to move quickly from approvals to creating the infrastructure, swiftly followed by housing.

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New Home Warranty – Your choice of Insurer is becoming ever more critical

row of four large terraced houses

Why?

Structural Warranty Insurance runs for 10 or 12 years whereas most insurance policies run for only 12 months.

Some key things to consider such as: –

  • What happens if your insurer becomes insolvent? If the Insurer goes bust then they won’t still be there to pay the claim.
  • What cover are you obtaining
  • What are the exclusions?
  • Does the policy cover the cost to fully rebuild the property or is there a lower limit?
  • Are key elements such as ‘ingress of water’ covered for the full policy period?

It is not always about price. Beware of the increasing number of providers who are offering very low premiums – there is usually a reason why they are cheaper.

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Build-Zone again emphasize and encourage the use of A-Rated Insurers after Elite Insurance cease underwriting

Build-Zone have always said and maintained that everyone who buys Structural Warranties should only do so from A-Rated Insurers as it is a long-term insurance policy.

We can offer a choice of A-rated Insurers and high capacity/limits available.

arrow that says insurance

If any Warranty Insurer is also engaged in Motor Insurance, and particularly now with the changes due to Ogden, they need to be extra careful because of the potential for long-term liabilities putting strain on their capital.

Always ensure that you are using Insurance Professionals who understand the business but also the Risk Management and who deal direct with the Underwriters and not a Wholesale Team / Telephone Sales Staff who just see it as easy pickings. It may not cost you anymore now for better “security” but could mean a lot in later years when claims start coming in.

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Roofing Installation: What Can Go Wrong?

Andy Butchers shares his insider knowledge to help you troubleshoot this key element of your building project.

roofing installation on a house

It may be stating the obvious, but every house needs a robust roof to close up the structure and protect it from the elements. Given it will be acting as the first line of defence, it’s perhaps not surprising that roofing issues are by far the biggest area of insurance and warranty claims. And what’s the most common problem? You guessed it: water ingress.

What’s frustrating for self-builders and renovators who encounter this kind of scenario is that, with a little more thought from their designers and contractors, most of these problems can be completely eliminated. Here’s what to watch out for on your project.

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MPs call for end to dominance of large housebuilders

An investigation by a House of Commons select committee into the housebuilding sector has called for the dominance of the large housebuilders to end to fix the UK’s broken housing market.

large housebuilders

The Communities and Local Government committee said it had found that the eight largest firms were building over half of all new homes in the country making the industry over reliant on an “alarmingly small number of commercial actors”.

The report added that while no evidence of land banking by the housebuilders had been found there was little incentive for them to build any quicker. In addition, the committee said that land was in such high demand in some areas that developers were paying over the odds which in turn meant they were having to increase the density of homes on schemes and reduce levels of affordable housing to recover their investment.

Developers were also building more slowly so as not to saturate the market and lower house prices, the report said, and recommended the case be examined for public intervention.

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