The approach put forward by Common Weal would make use of the Scottish National Investment Bank. It says that the model could be used as a post-pandemic stimulus scheme to reform and secure the housing and construction sector.
In the current market a three-bedroom family home would incur a monthly cost in rent, heating and maintenance of about £1,400, said Common Weal.
A house built using its proposed methodology would have a monthly rent, maintenance and heating bill of only £820, it claimed.
The paper said that Scotland’s housing sector is deeply unbalanced. The owner-occupier sector has inflated prices far out of reach of many whilst delivering cold, draughty and poorly built homes to those who can still afford them.
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The private rental sector has become similarly inflated, it said, trapping many in a situation where they cannot simultaneously pay rent and save for the deposit to buy a house.
It said that the social rented sector has been deeply stigmatised and run down over decades to the point where it no longer fits the purpose that it was designed for – to provide an affordable and high quality home to everyone who needs one.
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Common Weal said that the economic crisis caused by the 2020 coronavirus pandemic coupled with the looming crisis of the climate emergency will mandate the mass construction of high-quality homes complying with zero-carbon and near-passive heating standards.
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