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New build homes drive UK housing supply increase

UK housing supply soared in the year to the end of March driven by an increase in the number of new homes being built.

There were 241,130 net additional dwellings, up nine per cent on the previous period, with new build homes accounting for 213,660.

Change of use was the second biggest driver behind the spike in accommodation, creating 29,260 additional dwellings.

In total, 14,107 of the net additions through change of use were made using permitted development rights, meaning full planning permission is not required. Of those, 12,032 were former office buildings converted into residential accommodation.

There were also 5,220 new homes added by converting houses to flats and 940 other gains from caravans and boats

Vadim Toader, founder and chief executive of fintech firm Proportunity, said: “Britain’s failure to build enough homes for the past few decades is a key factor behind the affordability we face today and so today’s figures showing housebuilding is at a record high are welcome news.

“However, years of weak wage growth and a challenging savings environment have taken their toll and so many still need a helping hand to get on to the housing ladder”.

“The industry must build on this success, and cannot rest on its laurels,” Andrew Southern, chairman of property developer Southern Grove, added.

“The property market is crying out for more new homes, the demand is there and local authorities, particularly in the cities, need to be open to creative ways of encouraging more affordable schemes in high density areas.”

By Jessica Clark

Source: City AM