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The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has called on the Government to put political differences aside and start negotiations for “significantly more investment” to build thousands of genuinely affordable homes in London, with a focus on new council and social housing.
With funding negotiations between City Hall and Government for the new Affordable Homes Programme covering the next five years (2021/22-25/26) to begin soon, Khan has written to Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick on what he would like to see from the programme.
Khan has also used the letter to reject the government definition of 'affordable rent', which has long been criticised by campaigners too.
The Mayor also sets out the evidence for what is required to address London’s housing crisis - £4.9 bn per year over ten years, seven times more than currently given.
In his letter, Khan says: "We also have clear evidence that in London the overwhelming housing need is for homes at social rent levels.
"Building council, social rented and other genuinely affordable homes in London is the only way to tackle the scourge of homelessness – around 17 of every 1,000 households in London is homeless and living in temporary accommodation, compared to just 1.5 per 1,000 in the rest of England.
"The need for low-cost rented homes is set out in detail in London’s Strategic Housing Market Assessment, a document which has been endorsed by the independent panel of inspectors as part of the London Plan process. It is only right that the next AHP reflects this."
A full copy of the letter can be found here.