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Unlock the Housing Blockers

South East England Councils (SEEC)’s report, Unlock the housing blockers, says that the body’s members are concerned about stalled or slow development on sites with planning permission, which is often due to widespread development industry business practices to balance supply and demand of housing to maximise profits.

SEEC’s members are concerned about "land banking" by prospective developers and the activities of "speculative promoters, who bring sites to outline permission stage to increase land value, but are then slow to get developers in place and complete building". Councils often lack the tools to tackle those in the development industry who are slow to deliver once planning permission is given. The report recommends that the government should provide discretionary local powers to tackle slow delivery of approved housing plans and permissions, allowing councils local freedom if they wish to "charge council tax or other fees on unnecessarily delayed building of permissions", or to "reduce the length of time a planning permission is valid".

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