Review warns failing to satisfy could lead to ban on public funding or bidding for public land

Housebuilders and developers who fail to satisfy their customers could be banned from bidding for public land, according to measures set out in the Callcutt Review.

The review also called for a CABE design review panel specifically set up to assess the quality of new housing.

Published today, it calls for an independent customer satisfaction survey to be carried out every year, with failing housebuilders and developers to be banned from receiving public funding or bidding for public land.

To ensure a consistent standard of design quality is upheld, former chief executive of English Partnerships, John Callcutt recommends a review panel to be set up with the assistance of CABE. Developments which pass the design review should not be subject to further planning requirements connected to quality, according to the review.

He said that the housebuilding industry has the ability to meet the government’s target of building 240,000 homes per year by 2016, but only if the industry and local authorities find new ways of working together.

Calcutt said: “The industry is in shape to deliver the homes we need for future generations but we must create the market conditions to attract investment on the scale required.

“Unless we continue to regenerate our towns and cities, they will decline and in turn force more development to the edge of town and out into our countryside.”

His recommendations include:
• Local authorities to form partnerships with developers to attract private investment to lower value sites
• An independent body to ensure the government’s target of all homes to be zero carbon by 2016 is met
• The introduction of an integrated regime of housebuilding inspection, combining building control, planning conditions and warranty requirements

Stewart Baseley, executive chairman of the Home Builders Federation, added: “Callcutt’s recognition of the need to incentivise improved partnerships between housebuilders and local authorities is critical if we are to encourage the investment required to come forward.”

The government said it is looking at taking on a number of Callcutt’s recommendations, including setting up a new body to help deliver its zero carbon targets, examining proposals for a customer survey and introducing ‘fast track contracts’ to speed up the development of new homes on public sector land.