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27/02/2019

Housebuilding rising but not meeting government targets, reveals survey

House building / iStock: 911674684

The results of a survey have found that 57 per cent of housebuilders increased the rate at which they built new homes in the last year.

Construction consulting and design agency McBains commissioned VIGA to carry out the survey of 431 housebuilders across England.

Housebuilders have predicted a further rise of housing over the next 12 months, yet fewer than half (48 per cent) thought that the government target of building 300,000 homes a year on average by the mid 2020s was achievable.

Respondents cited worries over land availability, slow planning permission and skills shortages as barriers that were preventing them from building more homes. They expect one in five (22 per cent) of those new homes to be classed as affordable homes for rent or sale.

Clive Docwra, managing director of McBains, said: “The construction industry relies on thousands of skilled EU workers because of skills shortages in the domestic workforce, and with these workers potentially prevented from working in the UK after the Brexit transition period ends in 2021, many housebuilders will be struggling to find the workforce needed to build the new homes that are urgently needed.”

Housebuilders said that the government should incentivise large construction companies to develop more expeditiously to dissuade them from holding on to land, such as introducing a land value tax (24 per cent of respondents); and provide loan finance to help support small and medium-sized developers build more homes (19 per cent).

Image credit | iStock 

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