Michael Winders will join after a short stint at the Cabinet Office. He takes up the new role in early July, having worked as the Cabinet Office's head of news since last November.
Winders said: 'I've had a shorter time at the Cabinet Office than I planned, but I enjoyed my time. It is just that the opportunity came up and it was too good to miss.
'I'm excited to be joining at a time when issues such as housing, community cohesion and the battle against extremism are moving to the top of the news agenda.'
The DCLG is headed up by secretary of state Hazel Blears. Winders will report to the department's director of comms John Shield.
Shield said: 'There are big issues around housing which Michael will work on. We are looking at expanding the number of homes being built because we have a fundamental mismatch between supply and demand.'
He added: 'Eco-towns make news on a regular basis. That will be one area he will be working on quite hard.'
Before the Cabinet Office, Winders was acting head of news at the Home Office, where he worked for seven years. Winders has also worked for the Ministry of Defence, handling PR for the Royal Navy in Plymouth, and as a reporter for the Plymouth Evening Herald.
DCLG is also expected to publish a White Paper on community empowerment, outlining how local people can have a bigger voice to shape local services.