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Land & New Homes

2% rise in new homes masks slowdown in construction and office conversions

Housing secretary James Brokenshire's upbeat comments about increased house building ignore downward trend, figures show.

Nigel Lewis

new homes

The rate at which more homes are being built has slowed, despite housing secretary James Brokenshire this morning welcoming news that 222,000 new homes have been delivered over the past year.

This figure, which is a 2% annual rise, masks a less complimentary picture when the raw data is examined more closely.

Homes construction growth has slowed from yearly increases of 11% last year to 6% this year. Also, the number of homes being created from conversions of commercial and other non-domestic premises has fallen by 40%, particularly the number of office conversions.

“The increase in new homes delivered is of course welcomed, [but] there is a huge dose of caution needed here before the Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government reaches for the Bollinger in celebration,” says Russell Quirk, CEO of Emoov.

“Year on year growth in supply has dwindled to a whimper at just 2% and at this rate of growth the government target of 300,000 new dwellings delivered each year will take fifteen years to reach”

New homes

The figures also suggest that the number of homes being created is beginning to plateau after five years of aggressive growth. The number of newbuild homes constructed every year has increased by 39% since 2013 and the number of ‘change of use’ numbers has more than doubled.

“Today’s figures are great news and show another yearly increase in the number of new homes delivered, but we are determined to do more to keep us on track to deliver the homes communities need,” says James Brokenshire (left).

“That’s why we have set out an ambitious package of measures to deliver 300,000 homes a year by the mid-2020s. This includes over £44 billion investment, rewriting the planning rules and scrapping the borrowing cap so councils can deliver a new generation of council housing.”



November 16, 2018

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