The Department for Communities and Local Government has published the results of Sir Adrian Montague’s review of the barriers to institutional investment in private rented homes. The review was commissioned as part of the government’s Housing Strategy launched in November 2011.

The review considered how to increase investment in private rental properties. The report makes recommendations to accelerate the provision of private rented homes to meet existing and future demand. These recommendations include:

  • Councils should use flexibilities in the planning system to encourage developments of privately rented homes. This could include waiving affordable housing requirements on new developments of private rental homes or reassessing stalled developments to establish whether the proposed new homes could be made available for rent rather than sale.
  • A task force should be set up to encourage and support private sector investment in build-to-let schemes and to develop a voluntary code of standards for landlords.
  • The government should provide incentives to encourage the creation of build-to-let business models. This could include the government sharing development risk in the short-term.
  • The government should allocate to build-to-let development some of the redundant, formerly used public sector land that is being released.
  • The government should work with councils to identify sites where there is demand for private rental housing. The sites should be made available to developers on the condition that a proportion of the homes built are privately rented.

A formal response to the review will be issued by the government later this year.