Labour has outlined plans to “tackle the housing crisis” and give first time buyers first chance to buy homes on new developments.

The plans also include new powers for local authorities and communities’ to develop land for more affordable housing by “reforming arcane and out of date land purchasing powers”.

They will also “close loopholes developers exploit to avoid building more affordable housing” and “put an end to the outrageous practise of foreign buyers” purchasing new housing developments off plan.

The plans include:

  • Rebalance power between developers and communities, ensuring local councils have stronger powers to deliver the affordable housing their communities need, not the housing that will make the most profit for developers;
  • Give first time buyers first dibs on new homes, and stop foreign buyers from buying up homes off plan, before local people get a look in;
  • Set out an ambition to re-establish the link between genuinely affordable housing and average earnings, bringing affordable rents and the dream of home ownership closer for those locked out of the system today.

Lucy Powell, Labour’s Shadow Housing Minister, said: “The country is facing a housing crisis with the link between hard work and getting on the housing ladder broken for many.

“Insecure tenancies, and expensive rents make it hard for people who play by the rules to get on in life. The challenges of affordability, an aging population, building safety and the climate emergency all mean we need a bold new approach.

“We will build a new settlement on housing, with a first step today forcing developers to build more truly affordable homes, and giving first time buyers’ first dibs on new developments so they can’t just be sold off-plan to second homeowners or foreign investors.

“Labour is the party of home ownership, the Tories are the party of speculators and developers. The Conservatives’ failures on housing today mean that they don’t have the answers to solve the challenges of tomorrow. They treat housing as a commodity, not the bedrock of stable lives and life chances.”