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Tom Brake Welcomes Affordable Housing

February 24, 2009 3:04 PM

Liberal Democrats in Sutton have welcomed plans to boost affordable housing and avoid home repossessions.

The plans, launched by the Liberal Democrat Shadow Chancellor Vince Cable MP and Shadow Housing Minister Sarah Teather MP, include:

• providing refurbishment loans for owners of empty homes if the homes are leased to housing associations,

• boosting the amount of private housing for rent including using empty commercial property temporarily as housing,

• bringing in a new type of secure mortgage to help boost lending to house buyers,

• letting councils and housing associations buy up unsold private houses and allowing them access to funds to bring them homes up to social housing standards,

• making sure the courts allow repossession only as a last resort.

Local MP Tom Brake said, "Many people in Carshalton and Wallington are struggling to get their own home or are facing repossession because of the recession. We must do all we can to help residents through these bad times.

"Many homes built just before the recession started lie empty, often because the banks are not lending to people wanting to buy, yet there are many people needing a place to live. We want to unblock the system and our plans will help to do that.

"Giving housing associations and councils the opportunity to buy up empty homes that builders cannot sell will mean hundreds of local families will be able to rent a place of their own.

"Many privately owned homes stand empty so leasing them to housing associations means people can move into homes that would otherwise remain unused.

"And making sure that the courts only allow homes to be repossessed as an absolute last resort will save many local families from the terrible situation of having their home taken away from them."

Tom Brake wants to hear people's views on the plans. You can contact Tom via his website at www.tombrake.co.uk.

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