20/09/2006 - Market renewal funding is 'inadequate'
Planning Resource - 20 September 2006
Residents in housing market renewal areas whose homes face demolition are not given enough compensation, a report claimed today.
Data from each of the pathfinders revealed that there is an average gap of £35,000 between the cost of buying a new home and compensation received by homeowners.
The research published by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation says the government's nine pathfinder schemes in the Midlands and north of England need to provide better financial and social support.
Report author John Flint said: "Central government should recognise that housing market renewal funding alone is not enough to address the increasing affordability gap for owner-occupiers in demolition areas."
The report acknowledges that some clearance is a necessary part of housing renewal but says the outcomes need to be tackled more adequately.
While some pathfinders have developed financial packages to help lower income owner occupiers, good practice needs to be spread more widely across the nine areas, it says.
A DCLG spokesman responded: "Pathfinder partnerships are already offering support packages to residents, for example bridging loans if the residents wish to move to a bigger property or a different location, or home swaps in which residents can exchange their old home for a refurbished one.