Govt to examine barriers to private rental investment

by Sarah Ashcroft

The government is set to examine the barriers faced across the private rented homes sector in a bid to address rising rents and growing demand.

Housing minister Grant Shapps has commissioned Sir Adrian Montague to review the barriers to investment in private rental property, as part of the government's housing strategy,

Rapid growth across the sector makes the demand for action by the government even more pressing, according to Sir Adrian, who has set out to remove barriers to investment which he believes will contribute to the continued growth and health of the burgeoning sector.

Mr Shapps said: "Over three million households live in privately rented homes, so it's vital that we take steps to ensure the sector's continuing growth and affordability.

Sir Adrian brings with him a wealth of experience and knowledge of the role of the private sector in boosting infrastructure investment and of housing policy, making him an excellent choice to lead the review."

Despite the government's keenness to address supply issues with its housing strategy, its approach has not been without its critics, and some are unsure as to whether the focus on rental housing is appropriate.

Earlier this month, the Institute of Public Policy Research (IPPR) indicated that the only solution to the UK's "chronic housing crisis" is to build more homes.

However, the organisation believes the planning and development industry needs to undergo fundamental reform for housing supply to be addressed.

"For decades our developers have focused more on playing the land market and the planning system than on building homes: we must break this link," the IPPR explained. "Only by reshaping how development happens and changing how land is controlled and released can we arrest the downward spiral that grips our delivery of new homes."

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Published on: December 30, 2011

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