Shelter Scotland builds economic case for doubling new affordable homes

Shelter ScotlandScotland will reap significant economic benefits if it doubles its affordable house-building programme, according to a new report published by Shelter Scotland.

The economic case for investment in affordable housing’ claims that if the Scottish Government were to increase funding to the affordable housing supply programme to deliver at least 12,000 new affordable homes each year, it would sustain up to 19,000 jobs, with every £100 million invested in affordable housing generating £210m of wider economic activity.

Investment in initiatives to eradicate overcrowding, dampness, disrepair and fuel poverty would all play a key role in reducing generational health inequalities.

Shelter Scotland argues that increased investment in affordable housing should also be part of a wider effort to stabilise and reduce volatility in Scotland’s housing market to avoid the potential harm of any downturn.

Adam Lang, head of communications and policy at Shelter Scotland, said: “At the heart of this report is recognition that everyone needs a safe, secure and affordable home from where they can set down roots and flourish within their communities and beyond.

“This is a compelling case for house building as a driver of economic growth. Building 12,000 new affordable homes each year for the next five years would sustain 19,000 jobs and for every £100m invested, £210m of wider economic activity would be generated. That’s good news for everyone needing an affordable home and good news for Scotland’s construction industry and wider economy.”

Ahead of next week’s budget, which will be laid out by the Scottish Government, Shelter Scotland is calling on ministers to recognise the compelling case made in the report and prioritise investment in affordable homes.

Adam Lang added: “We want to see an end to housing poverty where the lack of a decent, safe and secure home compounds health inequalities and damages the life chances of those affected, especially children.

“A widespread and concerted affordable house-building programme across Scotland would not just bring the economic benefits outlined in this report, it would also prove fundamental to delivering social justice to some of the most vulnerable and poorest people in our society.

“As such, we want to see Ministers prioritise investment in affordable homes when they make their Budget statement for the next financial year in Holyrood next week.”


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