Lunchtime news Feb 15

  • The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has published research on the early impact of and lessons to be drawn from the first three rounds of arm’s length management organisations (ALMOs).
  • Housing starts in England rose 3% to 183,000 in 2013, according to DCLG statistics. Completions were little changes at 160,000.
  • A rash of housing inspections from the Audit Commission includes the first three-star supporting people rating for a county council (Hampshire) and only the second three-star rating for a housing association (Tower Homes). Northumberland got zero stars for its supporting people service.

  • The Duchy of Cornwall [Prince Charles Land plc] has submitted plans for an 850-home development – inevitably dubbed Surfbury – on the outskirts of Newquay. The plan bristles with sustainability and energy efficiency.
  • Genesis Housing Group is planning its biggest-ever development after acquiring land for 750 homes near the Olympics sites in Stratford, east London.
  • A housebuilder is offering to pay £12,000 in school fees to buyers of £576,000 houses in Edinburgh, reports the Herald.
  • A survey by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors says the housing market is slowing down, reports the Guardian.
  • But several papers, including the Telegraph, are interpreting the Bank of England’s latest inflation report as a signal of another interest rate rise on the way.