More new homes

Official figures released this month show significant progress is being made by the housebuilding industry in addressing the country’s housing crisis, according to the Home Builders Federation (HBF).

The annual release of the Net Supply of Housing Statistics figures revealed that housing supply in England increased to 222,190 in the year to April – up 78 per cent in five years.

New build completions accounted for 195,290 of supply in 2017 to 2018, a year-on-year increase of 6.4 per cent.

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

Confirmation of the future of the Help to Buy scheme beyond 2021, announced at last month’s budget provided further confidence for the industry, according to the HBF.

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.

Stewart Baseley, executive chairman at HBF, says: “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.

“While 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.”