Spending shifts to HomeBuy Direct as HCA struggles to unblock stalled schemes

The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) has announced the shortlist for the second round of the Kickstart housing delivery programme.

As part of the scheme to unlock the stalled development of 22,000 homes, HCA has selected 265 national and local developers as well as registered social landlords totalling nearly £550m.

In contrast to round one, the profile of spending has seen a shift towards HomeBuy Direct (HBD), which HCA says reflects improved liquidity for major house builders but also a continuing need to support first-time buyers who are struggling to access mortgages.

Sir Bob Kerslake, chief executive of the HCA, said: “In this round we have seen a marked increase in requests for HBD funding and this indicates how the appetite for HBD has accelerated as an attractive option for first-time buyers, which in turn is fuelling demand for homes. This shift in the bidding profile has enabled us to increase the target for HBD by a further 3,000 units next year, as set out in the PBR last week.”

A due diligence process will follow, looking in detail at value for money, design, financial viability, length of delivery and risk.

A short report on the findings from round one, detailing how the £359.9m was awarded to 136 schemes, and guidance for shortlisted bidders entering the due diligence process can be found at Kickstart