Town suffers from ‘serious’ housing woes

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NOT enough homes are being built in Rugby and house prices are too high for young buyers, according to the Home Builders Federation.

The organisation says less than a third of the houses needed are being built, while the number of families on the borough’s waiting list has increased by 63 per cent in the last ten years. Prices have also more than doubled, with the average shooting up from £75,000 to £160,000. The federation states that the local economy is missing out on £1.2m of government investment and the creation of 555 local jobs because of low levels of house building,

Stewart Baseley, executive chairman of the federation, said: “Rugby is suffering from a serious under-supply of housing. It is crucial that more homes are built, particularly for younger families and first time buyers.

“On top of the obvious social benefits, building the homes the area needs would create hundreds of local jobs and bring in millions of pounds from central government.”

Rugby Borough Council says a number of factors are responsible for the problem, perhaps the biggest being the availability of finance.

Cllr Heather Timms, borough portfolio holder for planning and economic development, said: “We have known for some time that the availability of good quality housing is key to our communities, and that is why new housing features so highly in the council’s Corporate Strategy.

“We are one of only a very small number of local authorities in England that has adopted a Core Strategy, through which we have allocated land to ensure the long-term delivery of 11,000 new homes.

“And with 443 new affordable homes built over the last few years, we’re well on track to be able to meet the government’s projections.”