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PURCHASE GRANT EXEMPTION CLAUSE 'TOO WOOLLY' SAYS FORUM

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Housing Bill provisions for exempting certain housing association homes from the Purchase Grant Scheme are too vagu...
Housing Bill provisions for exempting certain housing association homes from the Purchase Grant Scheme are too vague, says the National Housing Forum.

In the week when the Purchase Grant Scheme is to be discussed in standing committee, the forum has stated that exemptions from the scheme should be enshrined in statute. It should not be left to the whim of the environment secretary to make such decisions.

In conjunction with other housing bodies, the forum is calling for exemptions from the Purchase Grant Scheme to apply to:

-- rural areas with sparse populations and where planning restrictions make development sites difficult to acquire

-- inner city areas, where development and land costs are particularly high

-- homes subject to planning restrictions ensuring they meet the need for affordable housing

Graham Facks-Martin, chair of the National Housing Forum, said: 'It is critical that affordable homes for rent are not lost in areas where they would be very difficult to replace. The need for such homes has never been greater, and we really cannot afford to lose this valuable housing.'

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