DLUHC wants half of properties delivered through the Local Authority Housing Fund round three to be new homes

Details of how councils can access a £450m funding pot to provide homes for refugees have been published by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC).

Guidance published yesterday states councils have until 28 March to tell the government how they intend to use their indicative funding allocation under the scheme, while those not receiving an allocation can express their interest in using unclaimed funds.

DLUHC wants councils to ensure half of the homes they provide through the scheme are new build, as opposed to existing properites bought, in order to provide 2,400 new homes.


new homes

The government wants 50% of LAHF round three funding to be spent on building new homes

Local authorities that commit to using the funding to deliver new homes, as opposed to acquiring existing homes, will receive an additional 10% uplift in the grant provided.

Homes England will also provide targeted support to councils with limited housing development experience and networks.

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The government is encouraging councils to work in partnership with housing associations to deliver the new homes.

To qualify for the uplift, the homes must be direct new developments, ‘off-the-shelf’ new build homes purchased from developers or conversions of non-residential properties.

DLUHC has so far allocated funding to 203 local authorities facing the highest housing pressures.

As of the end of March last year, 8,799 Afghan refugees were living in temporary accommodation. In February last year, Local Government Association data indicated that councils have helped 163,500 Ukrainians settle in the UK, including 47,800 arrivals via the Ukraine Family Scheme and 115,800 arrivals via the Ukraine Sponsorship (Homes for Ukraine) Scheme.

Round three of the LAHF is a two-year programme which will provide 45% of overall funds in 2024/25 and 55% in the second year, 2025/26.

DLUHC has said that given the urgent need for homes for those on the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme, local authorities should deliver at least two-thirds of these properties within year one.

Rounds one and two of the LAHF provided £500m and £250m respectively. Round one of the fund aimed to deliver 3,000 homes.