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Strongest affordable home building statistics for over a decade in Bristol

Strongest affordable home building statistics for over a decade in Bristol

The number of affordable homes built in the city has reached a 12 year record high, Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees has announced.

9 April


Image: Aerial view of Hope Rise in St George ©Eyes Up Films/BCC

The increasing number of affordable homes being built in the city comes after Mayor Rees set a new target to deliver 1,000 affordable homes a year from 2024, as part of its Project 1000 plan. Project 1000 sets out how the council will increase affordable delivery to meet increasing need, at the same time as tackling the climate and ecological emergencies and building sustainable, balanced communities.

In total, 474 affordable homes were completed in 2021/22, with the majority of these delivered by housing associations with support from the council, alongside the delivery of council homes. Statistics from the past decade indicate a steady increase in affordable homes built year-on-year, with figures doubling in the past four years.

With over 16,000 people on the council’s Housing Register waiting for homes, and projections suggesting the city will need over 22,000 new affordable homes during the next 20 years, Mayor Rees said this news couldn’t come at a more important time.

He said: “There is a national housing crisis and many people in the city don’t have a safe and secure roof over their heads. There are families and vulnerable people living in unsuitable temporary accommodation, so there is no option than to build new homes. I’m therefore proud we’ve doubled the number of affordable homes built in the last four years but we can’t stop the pace. Having a home has one of the biggest impacts on life outcomes, health and happiness.”

Statistics from the past decade indicate a steady increase in affordable homes built year-on-year, with figures noticeably picking up pace during the past three years: there were 260 built in Bristol during 2018-19; 312 for 2019-20; and 400 for 2020-21.

Councillor Tom Renhard, Cabinet Member for Housing Delivery and Homes, added: “Increasing the speed and scale at which we support the delivery of affordable homes is a priority for the council and this administration. These results, the best for over 10 years, show that we are moving in the right direction, but there is still plenty of work to do. Through Project 1000 and working with our partners, and our housing company Goram Homes, our ambition is to continue this upward trajectory to make sure Bristol has the homes it needs to truly be an inclusive and healthy city. We would like to thank our partners for their dedication and commitment to providing more much needed affordable homes for the city.”

The Project 1000 Affordable Housing Delivery Plan 2022 to 2025 outlines how the council will focus its land, time, money, and influence to create a step change in the way affordable housing is delivered in Bristol to meet its bold new ambition. The council will continue to support its wide range of affordable housing provider partners to deliver new homes. The council will also accelerate its own direct delivery of council homes through an investment of £1.8 billion that will see over 2000 built in the next seven years.

We estimate that currently there are over 1,400 affordable homes on site and being built in Bristol, but not yet completed. These homes are expected to be completed in the coming years as the council accelerates the delivery of affordable homes across Bristol. There are also thought to be around 13,000 homes with planning consent issued to private developers that are not currently building.

To see the impact having a home can have, watch the council’s video on what a home can mean: What does home mean to you?

What is affordable housing?

Affordable housing is housing for eligible households who cannot afford to pay market rents or are unable to buy homes at market value.

Types of affordable housing include social rented properties, affordable rented properties, and shared ownership homes.

National policy defines affordable rents as 20 per cent below the market rent.

Bristol City Council aims to be even more affordable than national policy. Affordable housing providers in Bristol are asked to cap each new letting at Local Housing Allowance levels, which are well below 80 per cent of the market rent.

Since 2015/16, there has been a steady year-on-year increase in affordable housing completions in Bristol, other than 2017/18 which saw a small drop.

As part of Project 1000, the council are looking to build over 2,000 new council homes on around 35 developments over the next five years. 
The council have also undertaken a further commitment to deliver 300 new council homes a year from 2027 onwards for the rest of the Project 1000 plan.

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