At the third session of the Commons communities and local government inquiry into the abolition of regional spatial strategies this week, MP James Morris questioned witnesses on LEPs' role.
National Housing Federation head of neighbourhoods Cameron Watt said a statutory basis with some powers would be helpful.
"We believe that LEPs should be charged with developing a planning and housing strategy, which should include a robust assessment of need."
Tetlow King senior director Steve Hinsley said loose relationships between local authorities have not worked well in the past. "Authorities also need guidance on how to carry out housing need assessments," he said.