The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has announced a partnership with one of the capital’s largest housing associations, L&Q, which will see £8 billion invested in 20,000 new homes.
Some 12,000 homes, or 60% of the development, will be genuinely affordable in an agreement that is the first agreement under the Mayor’s £3.15 billion affordable housing deal secured from the Government last November which will ultimately see 90,000 new affordable homes started by 2021.
City Hall is contributing £400 million towards the sum to help boost affordable housing delivery and to assist with land purchases and infrastructure costs.
The announcement came on the same day that the Mayor confirmed 100,000 Londoners now have access to the employers’ housing pledge he launched in January with business organisation London First with 23 of the capital’s employers now taking part, offering employees help with housing costs including access to a tenancy deposit loan scheme.
The partnership with L&Q, the first of its kind between City Hall and a housing association, is a major commitment to building new homes across the capital and sets out the Mayor’s clear plans to work with housing associations that are prepared to build at scale and willing to deliver at least 60% affordable housing. L&Q has also indicated its commitment to making significant new investments in construction skills and training to build homes for Londoners.
Khan has called on other housing associations to follow suit and demonstrate they are ready to take on similar projects before he announces other large scale partnerships when further funding is allocated in the summer.
‘For far too long, London has not been building enough homes. This has meant that Londoners born and raised in our great capital have struggled to rent and stood little or no chance of owning a home in their own city,’ said Khan.
‘I welcome L&Q’s commitment and significant investment in building new and genuinely affordable homes for Londoners. This announcement today demonstrates real progress on the long road towards tackling London’s housing crisis and signals my intention to work with housing associations to deliver thousands of homes with at least 60% being affordable,’ he pointed out.
‘I urge other housing associations to work with us to get on and build the homes London needs. I have been clear that fixing the housing crisis will be a marathon and not a sprint, but I am determined to lead from the front and get on with building affordable homes for Londoners to rent and buy,’ he added.
According to David Montague, L&Q Group chief executive, it has invested more than £2 billion in new homes for London. ‘Now, through this ground-breaking strategic partnership, we will build upon our existing pipeline and devote significant additional capacity into delivering even more new homes in the capital,’ he said.
‘Our aim is for 60% of these homes to be genuinely affordable. We will also commit to major investment in construction skills and training. L&Q and the GLA have been forging closer ties over many years to tackle London’s housing crisis, and this strategic partnership takes our ambition to an exciting new level. By working together, we will guarantee more investment in apprenticeships, jobs, innovative methods of construction, economic growth, communities and homes for years to come,’ he added.
Khan also wants more employers to sign up for and offer tenancy deposit loans to their staff to help with the cost of renting. Tenancy deposit loans and other help with the cost of housing are now available to more than 100,000 employees in London and he has this week written to a further 250 London Living Wage employers encouraging them to support their staff and introduce the tenancy loan too.