HC Deb 21 February 1978 vol 944 cc613-4W
Mr. Frank Allaun

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment why only approximately £100 million of the £157 million promised for the provision of mortgages by the building societies to applications sponsored by the local authorities is likely to be actually loaned before the end of the financial year 1977–78; if he will make a statement as to the prospects for a larger sum being in fact lent in the following 12 months; and if, in view of this failure, he will reconsider the proposal to require building societies to lend 10 per cent. of their total advances to the local authorities for on-lending to applicants for mortgages who have been unable to obtain them from the building societies.

Mr. Shore

The support lending scheme is working well in many areas, but it can be improved by developing close working relationships between building societies and local authorities. In 1978–79 all housing authorities have been offered an allocation. An appeals procedure to review the cases of unsuccessful applicants is being set up. My Department is preparing, in consultation with the local authority associations and the BSA, notes on "good practice" for distribution to societies and authorities. My hope is that these improvements will lead to a much higher rate of expenditure.