Housing minister Gavin Barwell has given the green light for the construction of thousands of new starter homes outside of the capital.
Built on brownfield sites, the new homes are designed for first-time buyers between 23 and 40 years old, and will be sold at a discount of 20 per cent below market value, with a maximum discounted price of £250,000.
The government has agreed 30 local partnerships with councils across the UK, with support from the a £1.2bn starter homes land fund.
Talks are ongoing with the Greater London Authority about bringing the scheme to the capital. Homes in London will be capped at £450,000.
Barwell said: “This first wave of partnerships shows the strong local interest to build thousands of starter homes on hundreds of brownfield sites in the coming years.”
However, the programme has come under criticism, with analysis by Savills suggesting that a 20 per cent discount would help average earners with minimal deposits buy a starter home in just 45 per cent of all council areas in England.
Responding to today's announcement, Local Government Association housing spokesman councillor Martin Tett said "It is good that the Government is working closely with councils to build more homes, alongside the infrastructure needed to support strong communities.
“Ultimately, local areas will need discretion on the number of starter homes required in new developments. This will allow councils to ensure a mix of homes – to rent and buy – are built which are affordable for those people that need them and that are crucial for enabling people to save money towards a deposit.”