Builders planning for further growth

21 December, 2018

Permission granted for 360,000 new homes in past 12 months

Builders are continuing to invest in land as they look to deliver further increases in housing supply, HBF/Glenigan’s latest Housing Pipeline report released today demonstrates. The report shows that permissions for 361,971 new homes were granted in the year to October, underlining the industry’s intent to build even more homes in the years ahead.

Official figures released last month showed that net housing supply in England increased to 222,190 in the year to April, up an unprecedented 78% in the past five years. Today’s report highlights the commitment of the industry to go further and deliver on the challenge laid down by Government to supply 300k homes a year.

The report also shows that the number of sites the permissions are being granted on is continuing to rise. The 361,971 permissions were on 21,848 different sites, the highest ‘moving annual total’ since the series was started in 2006. This is very welcome and suggests Local Authorities are spreading their housing need across more sites instead of relying on fewer larger ones. This is something HBF pushed hard to be enforced through the planning system as it enables more SME builders to play their part in addressing our housing shortage. 

The announcement of an extension to Help to Buy in October’s Budget will provide further confidence for the industry as it looks to push these permissions through the planning system.  Certainty of future demand is absolutely key for builders as they look to invest in these permissions, and get them to the point to where they are allowed to actually start building the homes.

Builders are also continuing to invest heavily in the people, supply chain and new technologies that will enable them to build out these permissions in the years ahead at a rate that will help achieve Government targets.

Concern of course remains as to the impact Brexit will have on the economy and the confidence of new home buyers, and in particular on continued access to skilled foreign workers and the industry continues to push Government for certainty. 

Speaking today, Stewart Baseley, executive chairman at HBF said;

“Today’s figures clearly show the commitment of the industry to delivering further increases in housing supply. The industry has delivered unprecedented increases in housing supply over recent years and is continuing to invest heavily in the land and people needed to go further. The recent confirmation of an extension to the Help to Buy scheme provides further certainty and confidence for builders in future demand. This is enabling them to invest in more sites, their supply chains and recruit and train more people, boosting local economies across the country.

“The industry continues to push Government for confirmation that it will have ongoing access to skilled labour from abroad post Brexit, which will be key to its ability to build out these sites.”

For media enquiries, or to arrange an interview, please contact Steve Turner on 020 7960 1606 or 07919 307760.    

Notes to editors

  1. The Home Builders Federation (HBF) is the representative body of the home building industry in England and Wales. The HBF’s member firms account for some 80% of all new homes built in England and Wales in any one year, and include companies of all sizes, ranging from multi-national, household names through regionally based businesses to small local companies:
  1. Glenigan is the UK’s leading provider of construction data, contract leads and construction market analysis. Combining comprehensive data gathering and exhaustive research with detailed statistical modelling and expert analysis, it delivers a trusted insight into UK construction trends and activity.
  1. The housing approvals data analysed in this report is drawn from Glenigan’s extensive database of current and planned construction projects. Glenigan’s detailed coverage of planned housing projects across the UK offers valuable strategic and tactical insights into developers’ active sights and pipeline, with sites tracked through to completion.
  1. ‘Permissions’ are measured when the first ‘reserve matter’ attached to the consent is approved. Before an ‘implementable’ permission is granted that allows work to start on site, a planning obligations (S106) agreement will almost always have to be agreed and signed and all pre-commencement planning conditions attached to the permission have to be discharged. Some permissions will have up to 100 conditions attached.
  1. Net Housing Supply – the official measure on which the Government is basing its 300k target (new dwellings, conversions and changes of use, such as office to residential, less demolitions), reached 222k in 2017/18 an increase of 78% in the past 5 years. Of these 195,290 were new build homes.
  1. Housing Pipeline shows permissions granted on all sites. Previous versions did not include numbers for sites of under 10 units. All historic figures have been adjusted to reflect the change in methodology
Steve Turner circle
Director of Communications

Steve Turner is HBF’s Director of Communications. Steve qualified as a Civil Engineer before moving into journalism and then communications. After six years as Head of Communications for some of Network Rail’s major projects Steve moved into the housing sector and joined HBF in 2008. His remit covers HBF’s media relations, marketing and general communications activity plus membership liaison. Steve is also leading on HBF’s focus on customer service and build quality.