Conservatives would decentralise housing targets and give council tenants “right to move”, says green paper

A Conservative government would decentralise housing targets and give local authorities and rural communities more power to build new homes, according to a green paper released later today.

The Conservative green paper is due to be launched by shadow housing minister Grant Shapps and shadow communities secretary Caroline Spelman later on today.

In it, the party leaders are expected to recommend that national housing targets are scrapped in favour of regional targets set by each local authority.

Rural communities will also be given new powers by a Conservative government to approve plans for more housing without the need to go through a local authority.

Shapps told the Daily Telegraph: "We are prepared to trust local people. If people want to keep a local post office in business by building more local affordable housing, then they can.”

Stewart Baseley, executive chairman of the Home Builders Federation, gave a “cautious” welcome to the proposals, but warned that more safeguards were needed to guarantee new homes were built.

He said: “It is essential that any localist approach results in a climate in which sufficient housing can be delivered. If it doesn't, we are storing up both social and affordability problems for the future.”

The green paper is also expected to suggest council tenants be given the “right to move” to different parts of the country without losing their entitlement to social housing.

Well-behaved tenants who have lived in a residence for five years will be able to demand that their landlord sell it and buy another where the tenants wishes to live.