Housing

The case for investment in housing is a compelling one. House building has a hugely positive impact upon the local economy, creating and sustaining jobs not just in the construction sector, but also in professional services and retail. A safe, secure and warm home also produces health and educational benefits.

Housing

A DUP Social Development Minister would seek to:

  • Produce a comprehensive Homes and Communities strategy for Northern Ireland, agreed with the housing sector
  • Take an early decision on the outcome of the Fundamental Review of the Northern Ireland Housing Executive, with the DUP preference for exploring models that would separate the strategic and landlord functions, and utilise assets to make social housing more self-financing
  • Examine how a single regulator for the whole housing sector could be created
  • Create certainty on future Housing Executive rent levels, targeting any revenue raised on reinstating properties, maintaining homes and installing energy efficiency measures
  • Strike a better balance between funding new builds and maintaining existing social homes
  • Instigate a review of the common selection scheme
  • Introduce legislative changes that strengthen the powers of social landlords to deal with anti-social tenants and examine how the law could be extended to include private landlords and tenants
  • Establish a light touch, mandatory register for private landlords
  • Work with housing associations to scope out the potential to enhance their role in developing affordable housing and regenerating communities, whilst seeking to achieve optimum efficiency through consolidation and procurement
  • Seek to extend the programme of installing carbon monoxide monitors in social homes
  • Engage with telecommunications companies with a view to developing a roll out programme to provide affordable broadband access in social housing
  • Set up a Northern Ireland Housing Forum involving all housing providers and representatives of those Government Departments involved including DSD, DFP and Planning
  • Assist first time buyers including through a graduate home loan scheme for those with degrees in subjects crucial to improving our economy such as STEM, finance and business
  • Promote shared ownership schemes and provide tenants with greater opportunity to own or part-own their home, including greater flexibility in the proportion stake required for co-ownership
  • Explore how funding to assist the Co-Ownership scheme could be increased as well as the establishment of a government backed loan scheme for first time buyers
  • Consult on a new process to review regularly the needs of tenants of social homes
  • Place an increased focus on the housing needs of the vulnerable including the elderly and disabled, ensuring processes are more sympathetic to their particular needs
  • Examine appropriate schemes to assist homeowners facing problems paying their mortgages and provide practical advice and support
  • Produce a comprehensive, cross-Departmental homelessness strategy
Close Learn More