Our current campaigns: Get involved

Future Housing Review has written an open letter to Gavin Barwell MP, urging a public consultation before roll-out of VRTB.

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE OPEN LETTER

CLICK HERE TO SEND EMAIL TO THE MINISTER

CLICK HERE TO SEND EMAIL TO YOUR MP

Housing White Paper says that Right to Buy will apply to homes built by Council-owned companies.
How helpful is that?

Why do the politicians refuse a formal consultation on the Right to Buy extension?

Why is there no news on the never-ending pilots?

Please tell us what you think. @FH_Review   #VRTB

Fast-track section 106

Objective : to radically reduce the time taken to negotiate a planning obligation for financial contributions and affordable housing

Comparison of timescales:
(a) with LA approval of obligations

timescales(a)

Comparison of timescales:
(b) without LA approval of obligations

timescales(b)

Future Housing Review fast-track system

The FHR fast-track system is based on the use of standard-form documents wherever possible, including:

  • Unilateral Undertaking (Form POD)
  • Financial Contributions Schedule (Form FCS)
  • Affordable Housing Scheme (Form AHS)
  • Standard Legal Definitions (Form SLD)

What’s in the Undertaking?

Developer will:

  • submit application for approval of financial contributions schedule (FCS) within 30 days
  • submit application for approval of affordable housing scheme (AHS) within 30 days
  • take account of LA’s representations
  • not commence construction of any dwellings before approval of FCS and AHS
  • submit application for approval of financial contributions schedule (FCS) within 30 days
  • submit application for approval of affordable housing scheme (AHS) within 30 days
  • take account of LA’s representations
  • not commence construction of any dwellings before approval of FCS and AHS
  • FCS and AHS may be withdrawn by the Developer if LA refuses approval or if no LPA approval within 30 days of respective applications
  • In the event of withdrawal of FCS and/or AHS, Developer undertakes to consult with Future Housing Review to seek to resolve dispute
  • If FCS and AHS are approved by LA then a memorandum is endorsed to incorporate these as part of the planning obligation
  • If the FCS and AHS are not approved by LA then Developer may still incorporate them in the planning obligation and proceed unilaterally
  • Developer pays LA’s Legal Costs within 14 days of approval of the FCS and AHS by the LA
  • Developer pays LA’s Monitoring Costs on commencement of the development
  • Future Housing Review’s Standard Legal Definitions are attached to the Undertaking

What’s in the Financial Contributions Schedule

The Developer’s financial contributions towards, for example:

  • transport infrastructure or services, including new or improvements to existing footpaths, cycle ways, roads and bus services and their associated infrastructure, to link the Development to surrounding areas and ensure it is accessible by all modes of travel;
  • education facilities to meet any expected shortage in school places arising from the Development;
  • community facilities, including buildings and play or open space, where existing provision is inadequate to provide for the Development; and
  • other facilities to make the development acceptable in planning terms

Note: where a CIL charging schedule is in place, a Financial Contributions Schedule may not be necessary.

What’s in the Affordable Housing Scheme ?

There are two main forms of AHS – one for AH Land and one for AH Dwellings. For the purposes of this presentation we will look at the AHS for AH Dwellings, which covers:

  • Numbers, type, tenure and location
  • Design and construction standards
  • Timescale for construction
  • Cascade provisions
  • Occupancy criteria
  • The AHS also incorporates the FHR standard legal definitions.

Particulars of Affordable Housing Scheme

The AHS sets out specifics for matters which are referred to in  the Undertaking.

Site Address Meadow Farm, Hometown, HT1 2TH
Date of Planning Obligation 1st April 2015
Planning Application Ref OPA/2015/201
Number of dwellings 100
Number of Market Dwellings 75
Number of Affordable Dwellings 25
Policy Percentage 40%
Viable Percentage 25%
Cap on Council’s Legal Costs £5,000
Cap on Council’s Monitoring Costs £2,500

Numbers, type, tenure and location

Plots numbers and description, tenure and location on the site Up to 25 affordable units – details to be agreed at reserved matters stage.
[Note: commuted sums can be offered in lieu of onsite provision where appropriate.]
Type and specification As shown on Developer’s construction drawings to be submitted in connection with reserved matters approval
Tenure Up to 10 units – Intermediate Affordable Housing
Up to 5 units – Affordable Rented Housing
Up to 10 units – Social Rented Housing
Location As shown on the estate layout plan to be submitted in connection with reserved matters approval

Design and construction standards

Standards applicable NHBC Buildmark and/or Buildmark Choice.
Relevant Core Strategy
Reasons for departure from core strategy (if non-compliant)

Timescale for construction

Plots Timescale for Practical Completion Provisional Phasing
Intermediate Housing;
Housing
By completion of 30th market dwelling in Phase One Part of Phase One comprising 32 market dwellings
Affordable Rented Housing By completion of 40th market dwelling in Phase Two Part of Phase Two comprising 40 market dwellings
Social Rented Housing By completion of 20th market dwelling in Phase Three Part of Phase Three comprising 23 market dwellings
Relevant Core Strategy
Reasons for departure from core strategy (if non-compliant)

Cascade provisions

Disposal of AH units Terms
1. Offer to Registered Provider Developer must offer reasonable and commercially viable terms to a Registered Provider nominated by the LPA. The RP has six weeks to accept the offer.
2. Offer to other Provider If no offer under 1 above, the Developer must offer reasonable and commercially viable terms to a Provider reasonably acceptable to the LPA. The second Provider has six weeks to accept the offer.
3. Sale by Developer If no offer under 1 or 2 above, the Developer may sell the AH units on the open market at 85% of open market value (as assessed by two independent estate agents).
Relevant Core Strategy
Reasons for departure from core strategy (if non-compliant)

Occupancy criteria

Eligibility is determined with regard to local incomes and local house prices. This is a matter for the respective Housing Providers to determine, depending on tenure and priority of local needs.
Relevant Core Strategy
Reasons for departure from core strategy (if non-compliant)

Conclusion

  • By using FHR documentation, a planning obligation for financial contributions and AH can be tabled at an early stage and completed before the planning officer compiles his report
  • The planning obligation is fully effective as soon as the Financial Contributions Schedule and Affordable Housing Scheme are approved by the LA, subject only to reserved matters approval.
  • If the Financial Contributions Schedule and Affordable Housing Scheme are not approved by the LA, the Developer has the option to go ahead with what it considers to be a planning obligation that is acceptable in planning terms
  • Using the FHR system saves time and resources for both the LPA and the Developer.
  • As Tony Pidgeley of Berkeley Group says: “Just tell me how many affordable to build and I’ll do it. Don’t make us negotiate. Takes ages.”