House building up again!

15 Nov, 2018

House building up again!

Supply of new homes up 78% in 5 years

Official figures released today show the significant progress being made by the housebuilding industry as we look to address the country’s housing crisis.

Today’s annual release of the ‘Net Supply of Housing Statistics numbers – the official measure against which Governments housing target is set – shows that in the year to April;

  • Housing supply in England increased to 222,190 up 78% in 5 years
  • New build completions accounted for 195,290 of supply in 2017-18, a year-on-year increase of 6.4%

The industry is now on track to smash the target set by Government of building a million homes in this parliament (629k after three years); but is calling on Government to continue to support the whole housing sector if we are to deliver the Government’s new 300k target.

As well as addressing the country’s long-term housing undersupply crisis, today’s numbers emphasise the huge economic benefits house building is now generating. Every home built supports an estimated 3.1 jobs meaning the industry is now supporting over 700,000 jobs – almost 300,000 more than it was six years ago. In addition, the increases in supply have led to a huge uplift in the financial contributions being made towards local infrastructure and amenities and affordable housing provision. Last year saw developments provide over £6bn in such funding to central and local government– money that would previously have been funded by taxpayers.

Despite uncertainty over Brexit, the new build market continues to grow, and is now accounting for an estimated 15% of overall housing transactions, up from a long-term average of around 8%.

In the year to June over 350,000 applications were granted for new homes. These will in the main be built over the next few years and are a clear demonstration of the commitment of the industry to deliver further growth.

Confirmation of the future of the Help to Buy scheme beyond 2021, announced at last month’s Budget provided further confidence for the industry. Since the scheme’s introduction it has helped over a quarter of a million first time buyers on to the property ladder. The certainty of demand the scheme provides is enabling the industry to invest in the land and people needed to build more homes.

However, whilst the industry welcomed the extension, Government needs to ensure the new scheme can actually deliver the number of sales its budget allows. Further improvements to the planning system are also required as well as confirmation on the status of skilled workers from abroad post Brexit. Government also needs to build on the promising announcements made earlier in the year to assist housing associations and local authorities play their part in building more homes if we are to get to the 300,000 target.

Speaking today, Stewart Baseley, executive chairman at HBF said; “Today’s numbers are yet another sign that the home building industry is delivering the increases in housing supply the country needs.

“Whilst the second-hand market remains sluggish amidst wider economic uncertainty, with Help to Buy enabling first-time buyers to purchase new build homes, builders have continued to invest and increase output.

“As well as providing desperately needed new homes, the increases are providing an economic boost across the country. House building sites have created hundreds of thousands of new jobs and provided billions of pounds towards improving local infrastructure and communities.

“Whilst huge progress is being made, Government needs to continue to work with all parts of the housing sector to assist them to deliver further increases if we are to hit their 300,000 target.”

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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:
  2. Numbers from Net additions to dwelling numbers released today
  3. Estimates over job numbers/ financial contributions from
  4. Estimates on new build share of housing market from