Social housing has always been a hot political topic, but in the run up to the election it promises to be one of the most debated, discussed and deliberated of issues.
We already saw the arguments heating up in the recently passed party conferences. The Conservative Party pledged to build 100,000 starter homes for first-time buyers, which would be offered at a discount of 20% should they be voted in. The Prime Minister also talked about a £400m pot of low-cost loans for social landlords to use to construct homes.
Not to be outdone on the social housing front, Labour and the Lib Dems have also set out some grand social housing plans. Ed Miliband repeated a benchmark of 200,000 new homes a year while the Liberal Democrats went one better and said that they would increase the amount of social housing as part of a drive to construct 300,000 homes a year.
Another key point from Clegg’s conference was that social landlords would be given more control over their businesses so that they could make the most efficient use of their resources and consequently create more affordable homes. Labour however would like to set up some ‘new homes corporations’ to work alongside housing associations and private sector organisations to prioritise areas for development.
Turning Policies into Reality
It will be up to the housing professionals at events such as HOMES 2014 who will need to turn these national residential needs into a reality. The event at London’s Olympia from the 26th – 27th November provides the social housing and private rented sectors with the opportunity to find out about asset management, repairs and maintenance, retrofitting and sustainability.
At stand H221 of the event Flowcrete UK will be showcasing its high performance range of floor and wall coatings that have been tailored to the meet the aesthetic and functional demands of social housing developments. This includes:
- Hard wearing and reliable systems that have long life-cycles to minimise repairs and refurbishments. This protects budgets from unwanted, unforeseen and costly maintenance work.
- The fast-curing formulation of the floors means that they lessen disruption to occupants during refurbishments by allowing for a return to everyday activity much sooner than usual.
- Resin floors are seamless, meaning that they have no weak points such as welds or grout lines and they also have an easy-to-clean, impermeable finish that does not absorb unpleasant odours.
- Flowcrete UK’s easy-to-clean wall coating system Peran SH is decorative, colourful and graffiti resistant, with decorative flakes incorporated into the tough epoxy resin material to enhance the environment.
- The asphalt floors on balconies can deteriorate due to weather exposure, leaving the concrete substrate and steel underneath vulnerable to water ingress. Flowcrete UK’s balcony protection system can be applied on top of the old asphalt to treat and protect the structure.
As the debates for what social housing demands the country needs rages on let us know what you think is required in the comments below. Do we need more houses? More refurbishments? Better developments? More social landlord control? Share your opinion here.