Javid: Government to play 'more muscular' role to get homes built

Developers who bank land without building on it and nimbys have been warned they face a "muscular" response from the Government in an effort to tackle the housing crisis.

Housing Secretary Sajid Javid told "not in my backyard" objectors that the Government "is not going to be your friend".

He told The Times there had been "some hoarding of land" by developers and the ministers would now play a "more active" role in tackling the problem.

The newspaper reported that property developers would lose planning permission on unused land if they failed to hit construction targets.

"We've got a housing crisis. We've got no time for anyone who is just anti-development for the sake of it," Mr Javid said.

"If you are nimby, the Government is not going to be your friend.

"We are on the side of people who want more homes."

Mr Javid also raised the prospect of new charges to ensure the taxpayer benefits from any increase in the value of land once it has been granted planning permission.

"You take some agricultural land in the south east which is £25,000 a hectare and the value can go up to £10 million," Mr Javid said.

"I think it's right that the state takes a portion of that uplift to support
local infrastructure and development."

Sajid Javid has set out plans to build more homes (Andrew Matthews/PA)
Sajid Javid has set out plans to build more homes (Andrew Matthews/PA)

Former minister Sir Oliver Letwin, who is leading a review into the barriers which prevent building, is expected to recommend "use it or lose it" powers to force developers to build, the newspaper said.

Sir Oliver said: "There's definitely an issue . . . The delay on these big sites between the time when they're completely ready to start
work and the time when they've finished the last house is quite considerable.

"It's a number of years and there's quite a lot of land involved."