Manifestos Breakdown (Housing Policies)

So many issues face our political parties and the electorate – perhaps more than ever in recent living memory.

Housing has, to a certain extent, been pushed down the agenda, yet it remains vital to all of us. Decent and affordable homes are essential for a well-functioning society.


Here you can find a summary of what the major parties are offering to the electorate around the issue of housing.

Jonathan Rolande


Manifestos Breakdown (Housing Policies)

Policy Areas Conservatives Labour Party Liberal Democrats
New Homes 1.6 million over the next Parliament 1.5 million over the next Parliament 380,000 homes per year, including 150,000 social homes
First-Time Buyers Stamp duty threshold set at £425,000; New Help to Buy scheme with 20% equity loan Priority in new developments; Mortgage guarantee scheme for lower deposits No specific mention
Renters Finish Renters Reform Bill; abolish no-fault evictions Abolish section 21 evictions; Powers to challenge rent increases; Extend Awaab’s Law to private rental sector Ban no-fault evictions; three-year tenancies as default; National register of licensed landlords
Social Housing Renew Affordable Homes Programme; focus on regenerating housing estates Biggest increase in social and affordable house building; Review Right to Buy 150,000 new social homes per year; End Right to Buy; Rent to Own model for social housing
Planning Fast-track brownfield development; Design codes favouring local character Update Local Plans; Increase planning officers; Fast-track brownfield development; Preserve greenfield belts Expand Neighbourhood Planning; Properly fund local planning departments; Use-it-or-lose-it planning permissions
Leaseholds Cap ground rent at £250; Reduce to peppercorn over time; End misuse of forfeiture; Easier commonhold End feudal leasehold system; Ban new leasehold flats; Address ground rents and maintenance fees; Enact right to manage proposals Abolish leaseholds; Cap ground rents to a nominal fee
Cladding Continue support for cladding replacement Ensure those responsible for building safety crisis pay for remediation Remove dangerous cladding from all buildings; Leaseholders not to pay
Homelessness Continue work to end rough sleeping and prevent street homelessness Cross-government strategy to end homelessness End rough sleeping within the next Parliament; Scrap Vagrancy Act; Ensure access to emergency accommodation
Non-Doms No mention Abolish non-dom tax status to fund planning officers No mention

1.    Conservative Party

Protecting Family Homes from Higher Tax:

  • The Conservative Party will not increase the number of council tax bands, undertake an expensive council tax revaluation, or cut council tax discounts.
  • Private Residence Relief will be maintained to protect homes from Capital Gains Tax.
  • The rate or level of Stamp Duty will not be increased to support homeowners.
  • A two-year temporary Capital Gains Tax relief for landlords who sell to their existing tenants will be introduced.
  • Plans to end rough sleeping and improve temporary accommodation will continue​.

First-Time Buyers and Housing Ladder:

  • Majority of first-time buyers will pay no Stamp Duty at all, with a permanent increase to the threshold at which first-time buyers pay Stamp Duty to £425,000.
  • A new and improved Help to Buy scheme will provide first-time buyers with an equity loan of up to 20% towards the cost of a new build home.
  • The Mortgage Guarantee Scheme will continue, supporting more families to buy through shared ownership.
  • New ‘Local Connection’ and ‘UK Connection’ tests for social housing in England will ensure fair allocation.
  • A ‘three strikes and you’re out’ expectation for social housing landlords for anti-social behaviour will be implemented.​

Leasehold and Renters Reforms:

  • The process of leasehold reform will be completed, capping ground rents at £250, reducing them to peppercorn over time, ending the misuse of forfeiture, and making it easier to take up commonhold.
  • A Renters Reform Bill will be passed to deliver fairness in the rental market, abolishing Section 21 and strengthening grounds for landlords to evict tenants guilty of anti-social behaviour.
  • Continuation of support for leaseholders affected by historic building safety problems will be required, including developer-funded remediation programmes for mid- and high-rise buildings​

Building Homes and Urban Regeneration:

  • The party aims to deliver 1.6 million homes in England in the next Parliament by abolishing legacy EU ‘nutrient neutrality’ rules and unlocking the building of 100,000 new homes.
  • There will be a focus on building homes on brownfield land in urban areas, raising density levels in inner London, and regenerating major sites like Euston, Old Oak Common, and Thamesmead.
  • Urban regeneration schemes will be supported by creating locally-led urban development corporations in partnership with the private sector and institutional investors.
  • Local authorities will be required to use the new Infrastructure Levy to deliver the necessary infrastructure to support homes​

Support for Community and Self-Build Housing:

  • Those who want to build or commission their own home will be supported by making the planning process simpler and supporting more community housing schemes.
  • Different forms of housing, particularly for older people, will be encouraged​

2.    Liberal Democrats

General Housing Policies

  • The Liberal Democrats emphasise the necessity of ensuring everyone can access housing that meets their needs.
  • They acknowledge the current housing crisis, noting issues like unaffordability, poor quality, and health impacts from substandard housing.
  • Government house building targets are regularly missed, and there’s a shortage of affordable and social housing​

Building New Homes

  • Increase building of new homes to 380,000 a year across the UK, including 150,000 social homes a year.
  • Focus on new garden cities and community-led development of cities and towns​

Renters’ Rights

  • Deliver a fair deal for renters by:
    • Immediately banning no-fault evictions.
    • Making three-year tenancies the default.
    • Creating a national register of licensed landlords

Local Authority Powers

  • Grant local authorities, including National Park Authorities, the powers to end Right to Buy in their areas

Homelessness and Rough Sleeping

  • End rough sleeping within the next Parliament.
  • Immediately scrap the archaic Vagrancy Act

Leasehold Reform

  • Abolish residential leaseholds and cap ground rents to a nominal fee to give everyone control over their property

Community and Rural Housing

  • Expand Neighbourhood Planning across England.
  • Build ten new garden cities.
  • Allow councils to buy land for housing based on current use value rather than on a hope-value basis by reforming the Land Compensation Act 1961.
  • Properly fund local planning departments to improve planning outcomes.
  • Encourage the use of rural exception sites to expand rural housing​

Use of Brownfield Sites

  • Encourage development of existing brownfield sites with financial incentives.
  • Ensure that affordable and social housing is included in these projects

Planning Permissions and Infrastructure

  • Introduce ‘use-it-or-lose-it’ planning permission for developers who refuse to build.
  • Ensure that all development has appropriate infrastructure, services, and amenities in place, integrating infrastructure and public service delivery into the planning process​

Energy Efficiency and Safety

  • Make homes warmer and cheaper to heat with a ten-year emergency upgrade programme.
  • Ensure that all new homes are zero-carbon.
  • Remove dangerous cladding from all buildings while ensuring that leaseholders do not have to pay for it

Affordable Home Ownership

  • Introduce a new Rent to Own model for social housing where rent payments give tenants an increasing stake in the property, owning it outright after 30 years

Second Homes and Short-term Lets

  • Give local authorities new powers to control second homes and short-term lets in their areas

Social Renters’ Rights

  • Proactively enforce clear standards for homes that are socially rented, including strict time limits for repairs.
  • Fully recognise tenant panels so that renters have a voice in landlord governance

3.    Reform

General Housing Policies

  • The UK population has grown by over 1.3 million in just 2 years, yet only 425,000 homes have been built.
  • Mass immigration is cited as a main factor in the housing crisis, alongside bureaucratic planning regulations

Review of the Planning System

  • Fast track planning and tax incentives for the development of brownfield sites, including unused offices and vacant high street properties.
  • Review the system of Section 103 Developer Contributions for infrastructure such as schools and surgeries to accelerate house building​

Reform Social Housing Law

  • Prioritise local people and those who have paid into the system for social housing.
  • Foreign nationals must go to the back of the queue, not the front​

Incentives for New Construction Technology

  • Encourage the use of new construction technologies, such as modular construction and smart infrastructure

Apprenticeships and Vocational Courses

  • Increase the supply of skilled, well-paid workers to replace cheap overseas labour through new apprenticeships and vocational courses​

Tax Changes for Landlords

  • Scrap the 2019 tax changes for landlords to encourage smaller landlords into the rental markets rather than penalise them​

Abolish the Renters’ (Reform) Bill

  • Maintain existing legislation to address bad practices in the rental market, and enhance monitoring, appeals, and enforcement processes


4.    Labour Party

Renting and Housing Regulation:

  • Labour will overhaul the regulation of the private rented sector, abolishing Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions, preventing exploitation and discrimination of private renters, and empowering them to challenge unreasonable rent increases​
  • Labour plans to improve building safety, ensuring that leaseholders are protected from costs and that those responsible for the building safety crisis pay for remediation
  • Labour will end the feudal leasehold system, enacting Law Commission proposals on leasehold enfranchisement, right to manage, and commonhold. They will ban new leasehold flats and ensure commonhold is the default tenure​
  • Labour will tackle unregulated and unaffordable ground rent charges and bring the injustice of ‘fleece hold’ private housing estates and unfair maintenance costs to an end

Social and Affordable Housing:

  • Labour will deliver the biggest increase in social and affordable house building in a generation, strengthening planning obligations to ensure new developments provide more affordable homes and supporting councils and housing associations to build their capacity​
  • Labour will prioritise the building of new social rented homes and better protect existing stock by reviewing the increased right to buy discounts introduced in 2012 and increasing protections on newly-built social housing
  • Labour will work with local authorities to give first-time buyers the first chance to buy homes and end the practice of entire developments being sold off to international investors before houses are built
  • Labour will introduce a permanent, comprehensive mortgage guarantee scheme to support first-time buyers who struggle to save for a large deposit, with lower mortgage costs​


  • Labour aims to develop a new cross-government strategy to end homelessness, working with Mayors and Councils across the country
  • Labour will put Britain back on track to ending homelessness, building on lessons from past initiatives​

Planning and Development:

  • Labour will implement planning reforms to build 1.5 million new homes
  • Labour will take steps to ensure exemplary development becomes the norm, building more high-quality, well-designed, and sustainable homes that increase climate resilience and promote nature recovery​
  • Labour will implement solutions to unlock the building of homes affected by nutrient neutrality without weakening environmental protections
  • Labour will seek to consolidate powers for improved decision-making in housing and planning, working with local authorities to support growth and job creation




Please note that the contents here are for general information only. We cannot be responsible for errors contained within or if policies change or are not implemented!

Jonathan Rolande

Jonathan Rolande (MNAEA MICBA MARLA) began in the property business in the late 1980’s and is a Director of House Buy Fast and helped to found The National Association of Property Buyers in 2013. He has worked closely with The Property Ombudsman to develop a Code of Practice for Residential Property Buying Companies.