LondonNet News Headlines
28/07/00
Cash Boost for Public Sector London
- UKP250m in housing benefits to help stem key worker exodus

PUBLIC SECTOR workers who cannot afford to live in London are among those set to benefit from cut-price home ownership schemes and interest free loans.

UKP250m has been set aside to enable first time buyers to purchase a home in the capital. It is part of a UKP2.5bn boost for housing made available under Gordon Brown's three-year Comprehensive Spending Review.

The initiative stems from a fear that public service industries are unable to retain key workers as a result of escalating housing prices. This isn't surprising considering that the average house price in London is a whopping UKP185,000, and out of reach for the majority of working families.

Housing minister Nick Raynsford said: "We don't want to pump money in a way that pushes houses prices up. But we are determined to make home owner ship a reality for first time buyers in key jobs." Aids to buying a home are likely to centre around a UKP50,000 interest-free loan scheme.

Most of the rest of the UKP2.5bn will be spent on repairing ramshackle council housing over a period of 10 years and building 36,000 new homes for rent.

Meanwhile a survey from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors showed that house prices in London fell between April and June, the first decline reported since 1998.




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