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Housing and Planning

London is experiencing a housing crisis. The capital’s population is booming and will soon pass its historic peak of 8.4 million, but new housebuilding is not keeping pace and homes in the capital are becoming ever more unaffordable. London Councils estimates that 800,000 new homes will be needed in the capital over the next decade, while recent annual completions have averaged less than 25,000 a year.

London boroughs are already working hard to meet the challenge of the housing crisis, including using new self-financing powers to build new council homes; working with developers and housing associations to bring forward development on major sites; exploring innovative new methods to accelerate delivery; and developing robust and effective planning policies to support the types of development London needs.

London Councils works actively with boroughs to support housing in the capital by sharing good practice, lobbying for new powers and resources,

Our current work priorities include:

  • Working with boroughs to help tackle rising homelessness
  • Exploring innovative new approaches to housing investment
  • Influencing GLA and government on planning policies and reforms

We have developed a range of policy proposals to support new housing and sustainable development in London and are actively lobbying key stakeholders to deliver these. Our proposals include:

  • Lift the housing revenue account borrowing cap to help councils build more
  • Better resourcing for planning departments including full cost recovery on planning fees
  • Ending land banking through a charge on undeveloped land
  • Reducing bureaucracy around the use of surplus public land for new housing

More information on our work in this and other areas can be found on the links in this section.