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14/06/2016

Welsh Government missed 2014-15 affordable homes target by 45% - research

Words: Laura Edgar
New housing / Shutterstock_198728240

Just 2,218 affordable homes were built in Wales in the year to March 2015, according to latest figures.

Nathaniel Lichfield and Partners (NLP), which conducted the research, said this is 45 per cent short of a target of 4,000 new affordable homes a year. The figures suggest that the Welsh Government is also 27 per cent down on its target of building 8,500 homes a year.

The figures follow a pledge by Carl Sargeant, the newly appointed communities and children secretary, to build 20,000 affordable homes over the course of the parliament. 

NLP conducted an assessment of the Welsh Government’s household projections and concluded that the annual completions target for the country should be 11,660 a year.

This, said the planning consultancy, amounts to a total shortfall of 29,200 homes since 2011.

Gareth Williams, senior director and head of NLP’s Cardiff office, said: “The direct link that exists between total housing and affordable housing completions means that the under-delivery of housing has resulted in an under-delivery of affordable houses.

“The backlog of market and affordable homes will have very substantial impacts upon communities throughout Wales.”

According to Welsh Government statistics released last month, 6,170 new homes were built in Wales last year, an increase of 5 per cent on the previous year, but still short of the target.

Williams said the under-delivery of housing is having a “substantial” economic and social impact across Wales.

“Given that younger people are more likely to be adversely affected by the impacts of under-delivery, this might result in an increased level of out-migration of younger, economically active persons, creating a threat to the economy in terms of the ability to attract new investment.”

It also results in, Williams continued, an “inability” of people to form households and “realise their housing aspirations, resulting in more families living in unsuitable conditions”.

Image credit | Shutterstock

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