Lee Rowley’s comments made hours before prime minister Rishi Sunak announced general election

The housing minister has asked industry leaders to appreciate the “natural cycle” of spending review periods after complaints that a lack of funding is holding up development.

Lee Rowley told L&Q chief executive Fiona Fletcher-Smith at this week’s UKREIIF conference in Leeds that his department was trying to ensure affordable homes money was “spent as quickly as it possibly can”.

He said the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities was “looking more broadly with colleagues and Treasury about what may be possible” but warned leaders not to expect too much at the end of a spending review period.

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Source: Daniel Gayne

Housing minister Lee Rowley at this week’s UKREIF conference in Leeds

“I hope you’ll appreciate that there is always a natural cycle towards the end of the spending review where there is this absolute eagerness to get clarity but we have to allow that process to go through,” he said.

“As much as I want to give you clarity about what’s coming in terms of affordable housing and all the other things that may or may not be available, so do my colleagues in health, so do my colleagues in education, so do my colleagues and welfare, so do my colleagues pensions.”

His comments, made before the surprise announcement of a general election late yesterday afternoon, came in response to a question submitted by Stephen Teagle, Vistry’s partnerships chief executive, who wanted to know how the minister could help address the interruption in housing supply while the sector waited for the spending review.