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Thousands Of Low Cost Homes For Scotland Announced

25th March 2010

More homes planned despite UK squeeze on public finances

More than 7,000 homes are planned to be approved for rent or low cost ownership in the new financial year 2010-11, backed by 471 million from the Scottish Government.

The Affordable Housing Investment Programme includes plans for over 1,700 new council houses, bringing the total to over 3,000 this year and next.

Another 1,000 houses will be made available to first time buyers on low to moderate incomes, including priority groups such as armed forces personnel, under the Low Cost Initiative for First Time Buyers (LIFT).

Support will be maintained for the Home Owners Support Fund (Mortgage to Rent and Mortgage to Shared Equity) - with an additional 20 million on top of the 35 million announced at the start of 2009. Housing Associations will develop more than 2800 new and improved homes for rent.

Housing and Communities Minister Alex Neil said:"Despite swingeing budget cuts from the UK Government, we will invest 1.7 billion over the three years and we aim to approve 21,500 affordable homes across Scotland.

"Although the Chancellor has turned a deaf ear to Scottish calls to bring forward more housing expenditure next year, we plan to meet our targets.

"We brought forward 120 million accelerated funding from 2010/11 into 2008/09 and 2009/10 providing work for the construction sector and accelerating Scotland's economic recovery.

"Obviously when you bring forward money, the year you bring it forward from is always going to show a lower figure.

"The impact of the housing crisis puts into sharp relief the limits of Scotland's current fiscal framework. An independent Scotland, with full control of all financial levers, would be able to do more to support our house building industry and meet housing need."

A breakdown of planned housing approvals and expenditure in all local authority areas has been published and is available at: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Built-Environment/Housing/investment/ahip/ahip2010-2011