A recent poll from Reuters suggests that planning regulations should be relaxed to help ease the home ownership crisis. The Reuters poll revealed that experts believe nationally prices are expected to rise 2.1 per cent this year and 2.0 per cent in 2018 and 2019. Experts polled by Reuters said loosening planning regulations is the only way to achieve the building revolution that needs to occur and lower prices.
At the same time, the Adam Smith Institute has recommended the government give councils more sway if it wishes to solve the housing crisis. The think tank made recommendations in a new report on how to overcome the shortage of affordable properties across the UK. One of the key recommendations called for the government to allow councils to buy land, grant planning permission on it and then sell it off.
Last year the Redfern Review sighted a big problem preventing Britain from building was the lack of a clear and long-term plan. Responsibility for housing in Westminster has now changed hands six times since 2010. So it has been asked: Can Alok Sharma deliver on the target of a million new homes by 2020 set by the conservative government?
In delivering new homes it is also important to maintain quality.
The CIOB have announce the formation of a Commission of Past Presidents to investigate the issue of build quality in the construction industry, and what needs to be done to address it. And the Competitions and Markets Authority have proposed amendments to old undertakings under the NHBC warranty scheme for new homes. This is to protect growing competition in the market for new home warranties.
Latest figures from NHBC show a total of 14,680 new homes were registered in the UK during May. Of these, 10,231 were registered in the private sector, with 4,449 in the affordable sector, representing an overall increase of 16% on last May’s total of 12,649. The DCLG’s Housing Market Statistical Realise May 2017, shows that over the period since the launch of the Help to Buy: Equity Loan scheme, 120,864 properties were bought with an equity loan. And that the total value of these loans was £5.86bn, with the value of properties sold under the scheme totalling £28.53bn.
The Halifax House Price Index reports that June 2017 house prices decreased 1.0% compared to May, with annual house price easing to 2.6%. The Nationwide House Price Index reports that in June 2017 house prices were 1.1% higher than May, reversing the previous three months’ falls. And annual house price growth rose to 3.1%, returning to the 3-6% range that had been prevailing since early 2015.
Construction market overview: July 2017