Thursday, 25 May 2017

Andy Rose told to find ways to build new homes without government help

New HCA chief prepares for life without grant

The new chief executive of the Homes and Communities Agency was selected to find ways of getting homes built without further government grant funding.

As first revealed by Inside Housing last Thursday, Andy Rose, a partner at Agfe, a European asset manager and former Treasury infrastructure boss, will be taking on the top job on a permanent basis from 15 April.

Mr Rose beat off strong competition for the £160,000-a-year role on the strength of his of background in public and private finance as chief executive of Infrastructure UK.

HCA chair Robert Napier this week explained that the selection was made looking beyond 2015 when the government’s £1.8 billion affordable homes programme completes, and sent out a ‘clear message to the [housing] sector’.

He added that Mr Rose’s appointment was made on the assumption there may be no more grant in a repeat programme.

Mr Napier said: ‘You come to the rapid conclusion that there is going to be limited public money, and you have to find other ways of getting the houses built that we need. An obvious way is better use of public sector land… second is the use of the government balance sheet through guarantees, and thirdly ways of leveraging in the private sector.

‘We need to move with greater momentum and urgency. We are thrilled we have found someone who comes from a strong commercial and financial background who completely understands that agenda.’

Mr Rose will take over from interim boss Richard Hill who will resume his role as deputy chief executive and director of programmes.

David Orr, chief executive of the National Housing Federation, said: ‘Andy Rose’s substantial experience in both the public and private sectors, particularly in attracting finance for long-term infrastructure projects, prepares him well for this role.’

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