I'm Backing Sadiq Khan to Fix London's Housing Crisis

04/06/2015 14:03 BST | Updated 04/06/2016 10:59 BST
Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Londoners desperately need a solution to the housing crisis. That's why I'm backing Sadiq Khan for London Mayor - he is the candidate with the most comprehensive plan to fix the housing crisis.

The only way to fix the housing crisis in the long run is to increase the supply of new homes. Sadiq has a bold and ambitious plan to do just that. He will lead from the front, with his own new 'London Homes Team' in City hall to get London building. Crucially, he won't waste years setting up a new organisation, and the team will help Councils and housing associations to develop their own new homes teams, and to help them bring forward land and investment for building. We will need everyone building as many homes as possible to tackle this problem.

Sadiq's plan will put Londoners first he will use the mayoral planning and investment powers to put a 50% affordable housing target ahead of landowners' and developers' profit, to stop 'buy-to-leave', and to prioritise local tenants and first-time buyers.

And Sadiq will fight relentlessly to increase investment in new homes in London, investing the Mayor's unspent millions in his affordable homes fund, developing 'London Home Bonds' and pension fund investments, and fighting for councils to be free to invest to their full potential.

Sadiq also has the best plan to help renters. He will bring forward a 'London Living Rent' for intermediate housing - linking rent to a third of renters income. He will build on the work of Labour Councils to create a London-wide social lettings agency and campaign for the power to freeze private rents.

Finally, Sadiq has committed to campaigning against a toxic mix of Tory policies which threaten to make the housing crisis many times worse; lowering the benefit cap and the selling off of Housing Association homes. Sadiq's offer to work with politicians from all parties, businesses and community groups to stop it are welcome.

The London Mayoral election is a unique opportunity to begin tackling this crisis, so we must get it right. That's why I'm backing Sadiq - his plan is the most comprehensive and hands on approach to tackling London's housing crisis.

Baroness King is a member of the House of Lords