Housing secretary Robert Jenrick has confirmed that the government will fully fund the cost of replacing unsafe cladding in residential buildings above 18m high (six storeys), announcing £5 billion in funding for building safety.
A five-point plan has also been unveiled that will provide reassurance to homeowners and help bring more confidence to the housing market.
The move will ensure that funding is directed towards those highest risk buildings, with analysis of fire and rescue service statistics by the Home Office showing that buildings between 18 and 30m are four times more likely to suffer a fire with fatalities or serious casualties than apartment buildings in general.
To help residents in lower-rise buildings, which have a lower risk to safety, a new scheme has been announced to help with the costs of cladding removal for sites between 11 and 18m. The scheme will see no leaseholder having to ever pay more than £50 a month towards the removal of unsafe cladding.
Mr Jenrick also announced plans to bring in a Gateway 2 developer levy, which will be targeted and which will apply when developers seek permission to develop certain high-rise buildings.
A new tax is also due to be introduced for the residential property development sector, raising at least £2 billion over ten years to help pay for cladding remediation costs. It will make sure that property developers make fair contributions to the remediation programme.
Mr Jenrick said: “Remedying the failures of building safety cannot just be a responsibility for taxpayers. That is why we will also be introducing a levy and tax on developers to contribute to righting the wrongs of the past.
“These measures will provide certainty to residents and lenders, boosting the housing market, reinstating the value of properties and getting buying and selling homes back on track. We are working with lenders and surveyors to make this happen.”
However, according to the BBC, campaigners have said that this extra funding is “too little, too late”. The Grenfell United campaign group observed that residents who currently live in unsafe homes will now be concerned about whether their building will qualify for the funding or if they’ll be passed over once again.
And Labour said that the “arbitrary” height limit could lead to financial ruin for many people living in blocks below 18m. After the Grenfell disaster in 2017, many of the country’s tower blocks were found to be unsafe, which meant that there were thousands of people left facing huge bills to make fire safety improvements.
Are you looking for help with plant hire in Hull at the moment? Get in touch with the team here at Sangwin to see what we can do.