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Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what guidance her Department has issued on (a) mergers and (b) property exchanges between housing associations; and what recent (i) representations she has received and (ii) discussions she has had with (A) the Housing Corporation and (B) the Financial Services Authority on negotiations between the Riverside Group and English Churches Housing Group; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Iain Wright: My Department has not issued guidance on either of these subjects. The Housing Corporation's key document for mergers and group structures is Making Groups WorkGood Practice Note 11 November 2006. This guidance explains the Corporation's basic requirements for existing and new group structures. In addition:
Registration with the Housing Corporation April 2004 sets out the Corporation's Registration Criteria listing specific registration requirements linked to the criteria and provides guidance to organisations seeking to become RSLs; and
Regulatory Code and guidance August 2005. The Regulatory Code and guidance sets out the fundamental obligations of housing associations within the Corporation's regulatory system.
The Housing Corporation's key document for property exchanges between housing associations is Disposing of Land April 2003 and sets out the criteria for all disposals of land under Section 9 of the Housing Act 1996.
The Secretary of State has received no recent representations on the negotiations between the Riverside Group and English Churches Housing Group nor has she had discussions with the Financial Services Authority or the Housing Corporation.
In the run-up to the merger, the Housing Corporation held four meetings with the Riverside Group and English Churches Housing Group. Since the merger there have been two further meetings between the Corporation and both associations. No meetings were held between the Housing Corporation and the Financial Services Authority.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many times her Departments Neighbourhood Statistics: Housing Data Domain Group has met in the last 12 months. 
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what proportion of the market for sales of domestic properties was made up of (a) one bedroom, (b) two bedroom, (c) three bedroom and (d) four bedroom and above dwellings at the latest date for which figures are available. 
|Estimated number and proportion of homes sold in 2006 by number of bedrooms|
|Number of bedrooms||Proportion sold||Properties of all sales ( Percentage )|
Paul Holmes: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many tonnes of carbon are emitted each year by an average home built in accordance with (a) current building regulations and (b) the level three energy/carbon standard of the Code for Sustainable Homes. 
Mr. Iain Wright: If an average home is assumed to be a semi-detached house with a gas-fired boiler and a floor area of 88.8 metres squared, then the carbon emissions associated with space and hot water heating, ventilation and fixed lighting (not appliances) is estimated to be:
(a) 0.553 tonnes of carbon per annum for a home build to Part L of the current Building Regulations (2006);
(b) 0.415 tonnes of carbon per annum for a Code level 3 home.
The energy/carbon standards set for Code level 3 homes represents a 25 per cent. improvement on current building regulations and will become the minimum regulatory standard for new homes when Part L of the Building Regulations are revised in 2010.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the location is of each of the 550 sites owned by central Government being examined for housing development. 
The Register is managed by English Partnerships, the national regeneration agency. Government Accounting rules require all Government Departments and their sponsored bodies to place sites declared surplus to requirements on the Register for a minimum of 40 working days, to test whether there is interest from other public sector bodies before disposal and release of information into the public domain and to the private market. However, Departments or their sponsored bodies may remove sites from the Register if they change their assessment and decide that the asset is no longer surplus.
Every three months English Partnerships publishes details from the Register of Surplus Public Sector Land
of all sites that have been registered for 40 days or more. This latest list is available from their website at:
The 550 surplus public sector land sites referred to in the Housing Green Paper are spread across England: 37 per cent. of the sites are in London and the South, 36 per cent. in the Midlands and 27 per cent. in the North. Since the publication of the Green Paper a further 200 sites have been identified that are potentially surplus and which may be suitable for housing. The spread is now 40 per cent. in London and the South, 34 per cent. in the Midlands and East of England and 26 per cent. in the North.
English Partnerships are actively working with the Government Departments concerned to assess the potential for all these sites for housing development. In due course details of specific sites that are surplus will appear on the Register in the normal way, but for reasons of commercial or operational sensitivity site details are not being released in advance.
Mr. Leech: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) what assessment she has made of the effect of the Supporting People regime on the choices open to older residents who wish to retain their residential wardens; 
(5) what assessment she has made of the effect of the replacement of residential scheme managers with floating support on the level of security and communal support offered to older residents. 
Mr. Iain Wright: The Supporting People programme is administered at the local level by the relevant administering authority. It is for the authority to decide which services to fund in order to deliver good quality, value for money housing support services for vulnerable people in their area. The authority should make these decisions informed by the local needs and priorities identified in their five-year Supporting People strategies.
Moving from accommodation-based or warden models of support to floating support is a decision that can only be taken locally. It is therefore also at that local level that any assessment of their relative value should be made. No central assessment has been made.
In Independence and Opportunity, the national Supporting People strategy published earlier this year, the Government set out their expectation that both local authorities and Supporting People service providers should
Ensure that there is effective communication with service users and to explain changes properly to service users.
It is for commissioners of services locally to understand the factors that influence an older person's decision to take up a specific type of accommodation. This is not measured centrally by the Government.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many (a) interim and (b) full empty dwelling management orders have been issued; and which local authorities have issued them. 
Mr. Iain Wright: Six interim empty dwelling management orders have been approved by residential property tribunals since the relevant provisions of the Housing Act 2004 were fully implemented in July 2006. The following table provides a monthly breakdown of relevant decisions made by residential property tribunals.
|Month of decision||Type of case||Decision||Local authority|
Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what discussions her Department has had with the third sector on provision of social housing in (a) the West Midlands and (b) Coventry. 
Mr. Iain Wright: The Department for Communities and Local Government, through the Government office West Midlands, has had no direct discussions with the third sector related to provision of affordable housing either in respect of the West Midlands or Coventry.
Direct contact with the third sector is undertaken by the strategic housing authorities as they work in partnership with both the housing corporation and registered social landlords (RSLs) to develop affordable housing for priority groups.
In 2007 the West Midlands Regional Assembly published its second West Midlands Housing Strategy, which was developed through a comprehensive consultation process across the region with a wide variety of stakeholders, including representatives of the third sector.
Examples of the kind of schemes that Coventry, with the third sector, is currently supporting and developing through the Strategic Housing Regeneration Fund are a housing scheme for lone teenage parents, and supported housing for people with learning disabilities.
Paul Holmes: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many times she has attended meetings with representatives of (a) the Home Builders Federation and (b) the Renewable Energy Association in the last 12 months. 
Mr. Iain Wright: The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government has not held any meetings with representatives of either the Home Builders Federation or the Renewable Energy Association in the last 12 months.
Paul Holmes: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what her Department's estimate is of the marginal cost per household to the developer of installing an average sized domestic solar hot water system in new build housing developments. 
The marginal cost per household to the developer will vary greatly depending on factors including the size of development and the size and type of housing in which the system is being installed. While BERR does not maintain data on average figures, evidence from recent projects and other work suggests that the current cost is likely to be between £2,500 and £4,000 per household.
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will make the stock condition survey assessment model used by her Department accessible to local authorities in the same manner as the HM Treasury model; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Iain Wright: The question, asked by the hon. Gentleman is unclear in terms of what model is being referred to. No econometric model of housing stock conditions along the lines of the Treasury model is held by the Department.
The single transfer model (STM) and building cost model (BCM) are accessible to local authorities and used by them to model their assumptions about the value of the stock based on estimates of expenditure on repairs and improvements that need to be carried out over a 30 year period. Local authorities submit these models to the Department as part of either a large scale voluntary transfer or arms length management organisation application respectively.
If the hon. Gentleman is referring to a model of housing stock conditions held by the Department, the condition of the housing stock is monitored through the English House Condition Survey and from social landlords own estimates provided through their statistical returns. The English House Condition Survey data collection methods, along with the information on how it is compiled to report results, are published along with the data itself on an annual basis.
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