The Government’s proposed new housing algorithm – October 2020

Our analysis

The Government’s proposed new housing formula or algorithm will fail to deliver the affordable new homes that rural communities in Devon so desperately need. Instead, the Government’s sweeping changes to local planning could lead to the worst of all possible worlds – the loss of more precious countryside without delivering the affordable homes rural communities are crying out for across Devon and the wider South West.

Demographic analysis of figures released by CPRE show that Devon as a whole would see a startling 60% increase in the number of new homes under the New Standard Method of calculating housing need. This is well above the 38% increase for the South West region as a whole.

Some of Devon’s greenest areas would bear the brunt of the explosion in housing numbers with the South Hams seeing the biggest increase anywhere in the county (117%), closely followed by Teignbridge (102%), North Devon (93%), Mid Devon (75%) and East Devon (74%).

Urban areas of the county would see significant but smaller increases – Plymouth (28%), Exeter (11%) and Torbay (8%). Only 2 rural districts would see a small decrease – West Devon (which includes a large area of Dartmoor National Park) (-13%) and Torridge (-1%).

Under the new housing algorithm, areas with the sharpest house price rises since the 2009 recession would get the highest number of new homes. We believe this would only deliver bigger profits for developers at the expense of building homes in areas where people can afford to live.

There is still time to submit your comments to the public consultation – the Government’s White Paper ‘Planning for the Future’ The consultation ends at 11.45pm on 29th October 2020.