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Homes England improves framework access for SMEs

11 December 2020

Homes England will make a change from traditional frameworks to a new Dynamic Purchasing System (DPS) that it said would allow housebuilders to start to work with it at any time.

The new system will see Homes England move away from having fixed frameworks where housebuilders had one opportunity to join its Delivery Partner Panel (DPP) when the panel was renewed.

The change from its currently Delivery Partner Panel (DPP3) model is set to take place in July 2021.

The DPS is set to open for a first round of applications in April 2021. Housebuilders will have the option to apply to join the DPS at any time as Homes England’s pipeline of sites coming to market are publicised on the Homes England Land Hub or are brought forward by public sector landowners.

The new system will also introduce different categories of membership. SMEs bidding to deliver smaller sites will have simplified entry criteria, whereas the entry criteria for developers bidding to deliver larger sites will be more testing. Larger developers will be expected to demonstrate leadership around issues such as design quality, building safety, and improving equality and diversity in the industry.

Homes England said housebuilders would also be able to tailor their membership to express interest in specific locations or types of development to give the agency the ability to market sites to interested parties.

Minister of State for Housing Christopher Pincher said: “We are helping more SME and new developers to get into the house building market, and the measures announced today will make it easier for them to work in partnership with Homes England – unlocking home ownership for more families across the country.

“This compliments our recent work to simplify the outdated planning system through our planning reform proposals, making it easier and cheaper for small developers to build the homes we need.”

Nick Walkley, chief executive of Homes England, said: “Whilst a government procurement framework may not sound like exciting news, our new Dynamic Purchasing System (DPS) and land led approach really does modernise how we invite bids for public land. I hope our partners can see that we’ve actively listened to their feedback and acted on it.

“Our new DPS, with its new flexibilities, new membership criteria and more effective approach to marketing sites, will benefit our partners in the public sector and the housebuilding sector, particularly new entrants and SMEs.”