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Housing Rights Responds to DfC’s Call for Evidence on Housing Supply Strategy

Housing Rights has responded to the call for evidence on the Department for Communities’ (DfC) Housing Supply Strategy. 

The Housing Supply Strategy 

The Housing Supply Strategy aims to ensure that every household has access to a good quality, affordable and sustainable home that is appropriate for its needs.  

The proposed objectives of the Strategy are to: 

  • Increase housing supply and affordable options across all tenures to meet demand;  
  • Reduce housing stress and homelessness and improve housing solutions for the most vulnerable;  
  • Improve housing quality  
  • Ensure housing options that contribute to inclusive communities and places  
  • Support the transition to carbon neutrality 

Housing Rights response to the Housing Supply Strategy

Housing Rights welcomes the development of the Strategy and are pleased to respond to the Call for Evidence. Our response includes the following key points: 

  • “Housing supply” is a technical term that relates to the Strategy’s first proposed objective. A broader title (such as “A plan for housing for people in NI”) might more fully encompass the breadth of the Strategy’s objectives.  
  • The Department should consider how it can encourage all relevant departments to work together effectively, in order to deliver the Strategy.  
  • Housing Rights views the adoption of a standalone housing outcome in the forthcoming Programme for Government (as committed to in New Decade New Approach) to be imperative in the success of this strategy in that regard. 
  • Those with lived experience of housing problems and homelessness must be directly involved in the design, development and monitoring of the Strategy. 
  • The Strategy’s focus should be on preventing homelessness, rather than reducing homelessness. 
  • More focus should be directed to issues around both homelessness and the private rented sector. 
  • The definition of sustainable housing must include the ability of all households to sustain their tenancy, including affordability and any additional household needs. 
  • Affordable housing should be viewed through a broader lens, taking account of housing costs and household incomes to access and sustain accommodation. 
  • A particular focus should be given to improving housing quality in the private rented sector. 
  • More attention should be paid to the relationship between housing costs and poverty in the private rented and homeowner sectors. 


The Call for Evidence was accompanied by several virtual public consultation workshops. A draft Strategy will be subject to public consultation later in the year. 

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Policy, NI Assembly

This article was written on 23 July 2021. It should not be relied on as a statement of the current law or policy position. For help with housing issues please contact our helpline on 028 9024 5640 or use our online chat service at www.housingadviceNI.org.