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General Discussion

Just what is Affordable Housing?

22 Apr 2016 09:09

Apologies in advance to those who may be tiring of how much some of us are talking about 

housing but it occurred to me to start a separate thread so I could bring to the attention of all who are interested in this matter just what is meant by the term Affordable Housing.

Back in the early days of the Coalition Government (2010/11) new planning policies and guidelines were brought in. This was, and still is, known as the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). 

The NPPF gave the official definition of Affordable Housing which I give below. Please note however, that this is the present definition . I make that point as the Conservative government is in the process of also including Starter Homes, costing  up to £250,000 to buy, as Affordable Housing.


The NPPF defines affordable housing as:

Social rented, affordable rented and intermediate housing provided to

eligible households whose needs are not met by the market. Eligibility is

determined with regard to local incomes and local house prices.


Affordable housing should include provisions to remain at an affordable

price for future eligible households or for the subsidy to be recycled for

alternative affordable housing provision.


Social rented housing is owned by local authorities and private

registered providers (as defined in section 80 of the Housing and

Regeneration Act 2008), for which guideline target rents are determined

through the national rent regime. It may also be owned by other

persons and provided under equivalent rental arrangements to the

above, as agreed with the local authority or with the Homes and

Community Agency.


Affordable rented housing is let by local authorities or private

registered providers of social housing to households who are eligible for

social rented housing. Affordable Rent is subject to rent controls that

require a rent of no move than 80% of the local market rent (including

service charges, where applicable).


Intermediate housing is homes for sale and rent provided at a cost

above social rent, but below market levels subject to the criteria in the

Affordable Housing definition above. These can include shared equity

(shared ownership and equity loans), other low cost homes for sale and

intermediate rent, but not affordable rented housing.


Homes that do not meet the above definition of affordable housing,

such as ‘low cost market’ housing, may not be considered as affordable

housing for planning purpose


Brooklyn Bridge
Brooklyn Bridge
22 Apr 2016 14:39

Thank you Lynne for taking the time to spell out what that all means to some folk. What does amaze me however that the subject of the Dawlish Warren toilets would generate over 3,500 views.

28 Apr 2016 09:49

and here is the same info again but perhaps more clearly worded?


What is an affordable home?

The government defines it as a home for people “whose needs are not met by the market”. 

Largely, it includes homes that are not part of the private market.

Social rent – homes owned by local authorities and housing associations, charging roughly 40pc to 60pc of market prices

Affordable rent – homes let by local authorities and housing associations, charging up to 80pc of market rate

Intermediate housing – homes owned by housing associations, offering schemes to help people get on the ladder. It includes shared ownership schemes, where people can buy a share and rent the rest.

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