Scepticism weighs heavy on house building target

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The Government is likely to miss its annual house building target by 50,000, 86% of house builders and developers say, according to a Knight Frank survey.

In its annual housebuilding report Knight Frank reveals that the overwhelming majority of builders think the construction of 250,000 additional homes a year is the maximum achievable amount by 2022, falling short of the government’s 300,000 target.
The house builders identified planning as the biggest hurdle to reaching the target. However, 61% of builders said they plan to increase the number of homes they build during the next 12 months.

The majority of respondents to the survey (55%) said that London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s Affordable Homes threshold of 35% could, if applied on a national basis, hinder the delivery of Affordable Homes, suggesting that any threshold would need to be set locally.

However, most respondents (62%) actually favoured a threshold approach to Affordable Housing, provided the target was set clearly and adhered to, due to its transparency and the likelihood it would make bidding for land more competitive.

David Fenton, Head of Regional Land at Knight Frank commented, “Nationwide, housebuilding looks set to increase, underpinned by more evenly distributed house price growth and high levels of employment in regional cities. However, our survey indicates that scepticism prevails among house builders over whether it’s possible to deliver 300,000 additional homes a year, and ultimately they will only build what they can sell.

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