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Housing and Planning

The Issue

Housing associations and large developers are currently unable to meet the huge demand for new homes. Yet house building by small firms is in long-term decline. To reverse this trend we want the Government and local authorities to make it easier for small house builders to deliver the much-needed new homes.

Action FSB have taken

  • We’re campaigning for local authorities and the Government to overhaul the planning application process for small housing developments.
  • We’ve lobbied for greater assistance for small house builders struggling to access finance.
  • We’re pressing local authorities to take account of the higher build costs of small housing developments, when setting the levels of developer contributions.

Our Goal

Supporting small house builders is essential to addressing the housing crisis. We want to work with the Government, industry and local authorities to remove the barriers facing small house builders.

Achievements in...



  • We’ve worked with Government and industry to help create the package of reforms aimed at supporting small house builders, announced in the Summer Budget 2015.
  • We’ve made the findings of our independent research into the higher costs facing small housing developments, available to the Government, industry, and local planning authorities.
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  • We have consistently argued that the planning system in Scotland is a barrier to economic growth due to the time, complexity, cost and uncertainty associated with planning applications.

  • In 2013, during the planned changes to the National Planning Framework and Scottish Planning Policy, we pushed the Scottish Government to create a more business-friendly planning system.

  • In 2014 the government published new guidance that placed economic growth as a key value in planning policy.

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