The Government is continuing its drive to deliver decent new homes today with plans being proposed that would see all dwellings built to meet the needs of the country’s ageing population. The Government aims to see all new homes fitted with 16 features such as stairs being wide enough to allow for stairlifts and providing turning space for wheelchairs.
Whilst the Government is aiming to see these standards introduced by April this year, the National Federation of Housebuilders has leveled criticism at both the proposals, considered to be “costly” and over the lack of consultation undertaken with the industry. Strategic Policy Adviser for the federation, Roger Humber, has outlined that he is seeking urgent discussions with Government ministers in order to obtain greater understanding, particularly over the value for the majority of house purchasers, who are under 50.
Despite criticism from industry representatives, the international older people’s charity, Help the Aged has strongly welcomed the proposals ‘Lifetime Homes, Lifetime Neighbourhoods’ launched today. Caroline Flint, the new Housing Minister has commented that the Government wants to increase support provided to older people to “help them live safely and, where they choose, independently in their own homes.” Although the Opposition Shadow Housing Minister, Grant Shapps, welcomed the recognition of these needs, the Conservatives have nonetheless highlighted concern over how the “Government has spring these moves on business……..without any apparent consultation with the house building industry.”
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