FMB backs Labour's 'Help to Build' scheme

The Federation of Master Builders (FMB) has backed Labour’s plans to introduce a ‘Help to Build’ scheme to improve access to finance for SME builders.

It says Chancellor George Osborne’s pled to extend the ‘Help to Buy’ equity loan scheme to 2020 will provide long-term reassurance.

But it says more needs to be done, and claims Labour’s scheme would boost the industry in the same way that ‘Help to Buy’ has helped individual buyers.

Chief executive Brian Berry said: "To provide the number of new homes we need in this country both builders and buyers need access to finance.

Labour's 'Help to Build' would complement the Government's 'Help to Buy' initiative because current restrictions on access to finance for SME house builders still remain very severe.

“When it comes to loans for smaller residential developments the default answer from many banks is 'no'. When finance is available, it is too often being offered on steep terms; at high rates of interest, low loan to value ratios and often with exorbitant fees attached. What is concerning is that there has been very little sign of improvement in this situation over the past year."

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