Policy HSG5: Housing Mix

Open22 Jan, 2024, 10:00am - 4 Mar, 2024, 11:59pm

Policy HSG5:  Housing Mix for Market Housing

Development will be permitted where the mix of market housing:

  1. Includes a range of house type and size (including for older people, bungalows and suitable accommodation for downsizing with small gardens or outdoor space, and for those wishing to build their own homes) to address local requirements taking into account the most up to date evidence on housing need; and
  2. Is appropriate to the size, location and characteristics of the site; and
  3. Is appropriate to the established character and density of the neighbourhood.

Proposals will be required to provide evidence, proportionate to the scale of development proposed, to justify the mix of housing proposed.

10.37 This policy applies to market housing only. Policy HSG2 relates to the provision of affordable housing.
10.38 A mixed community requires a variety of housing, particularly in terms of tenure (including private rented housing), to provide homes for different households such as families with children, couples, single person households and older people. The council recognises that to promote sustainable communities there must be a mix of types of housing that are provided in any given development or location. The council will seek to balance communities where particular dwelling types, sizes or tenures have become prevalent beyond an evidenced need. The council will not support schemes for 100% flatted development, unless it can be demonstrated that it offers the most appropriate solution for the site, taking into account the criteria in Policy HSG5.
10.39 The Housing Market Assessment (2020) indicates that there is a need for a range of dwelling sizes. There is a particular need for three bedroom dwellings, and also a significant need for two bedroom dwellings which could meet the needs of younger people, and older residents looking to downsize. Although there is also a need for homes with four bedrooms or more, these should normally comprise no more than 30% of the market homes in a development. In identifying local needs particular regard should be given to policies in neighbourhood plans and their supporting evidence. If these needs should change over the life of the plan, then the council will publish additional guidance.
10.40 As well as seeking to provide opportunities for local people to rent or buy a home, it is also important for a variety of housing types and sizes to be provided to help achieve balanced and sustainable communities. It will be more appropriate for schemes with a higher proportion of smaller units to be provided on sites in or adjoining the centres of settlements with a good or a reasonable range of services and public transport provision. In the small and medium villages (category 3 and 4 settlements) and the rural areas of the borough, larger houses tend to dominate. This can lead to an increase in under-occupancy where people who wish to downsize within the community that they live in are not able to due to a lack of smaller dwellings. Here, the upper limit of homes with four bedrooms or more set out in paragraph 3 will be strictly applied in order to provide opportunities for communities to diversify.
10.41 However, it is recognised that the appropriate range of housing for any scheme will need to take into account the physical characteristics of the site, the character of the area, community context, local housing need and existing provision.
10.42 Appropriate ‘downsizing’ accommodation, including bungalows, with small gardens or outdoor space will be supported.
10.43 Development proposals will be required to provide evidence to justify the mix of housing proposed. The information provided should be proportionate to the scale of development proposed and the extent to which it deviates from the needs identified above.
10.44 The council recognises that for smaller developments (typically those of three or fewer units) it may not be appropriate to meet the specific requirements of the policy, however development should still provide a range of unit sizes.
Implementation and Monitoring

The policy will be implemented through:

  • Decisions on planning applications.
  • Maintaining up-to-date information on needs across the Plan period.

The policy will be monitored against:

  • The size, types and tenures of housing completions compared to needs information at the time.