During a debate on the lack of housebuilding in the South West a broker explained how he had to wait over two years for planning permission...
The National Housing Federation (NHF) has announced that the South West was almost 2,000 homes behind its 6,000 affordable homes per year target.
Jenny Allen, South West External Affairs Manager at NHF pointed out there was still not enough affordable homes being built in the South West and people were struggling to find homes in the region.
“Not building the full number of homes we’re going to need represents a failing of generations to come, and a missed opportunity today,” said Jenny.
“The numbers show that new homes are more than rooves over heads; they bring wealth to local areas and improve job prospects.
“That’s why we’re asking that politicians commit to ending the housing crisis within a generation by building more homes now.”
Martin Powell of Bristol-based Heron Way Group said that there were too many obstacles in the way for developers in the region.
“I believe that the one of the key factors is the time and expense of the planning process,” said Martin.
“To illustrate this I am awaiting planning on a site that has taken over two years’ work and a lot of money, yet I have had finance in place since day one.”
One development finance lender who is pushing house building across the country is Regentsmead, and BDM Ashley Ilsen put the lack of housebuilding in the region down to a number of factors.
“Funding is certainly a prominent issue but our developers are also informing us that a lack of bricks, good quality tradesman and land are also huge restraints to a good supply of housing,” said Ashley.
“The supply side seems to be unwittingly reliant on the larger housebuilding firms where SME developers are unfortunately losing out.
“In certain parts of the country you can see evidence of micro markets where supply and demand operate under various influences.
“Fixing these issues is core to our recent campaign to get Britain building again,” concluded Ashley.
Director of the Bristol branch of letting agents Martin & Co, Kevin Seager, felt that housebuilding in the region was in fact on the up.
“In South Gloucestershire there is extensive new building work going on, there [are] about 2,500 homes about 2.5 miles from my shop and another 4,000 house in the Filton and 2,500 on the edge of Cribbs Causeway,” said Kevin.
“I personally feel there is good movement in our area in regard to new builds. Whilst activity was buoyant in early spring with demand for suitable housing outstripping the supply of property for sale in much of the South West, it just feels like no one is interested in selling or moving.”
The South West is just one of many areas of the country the NHF believes is seeing an undersupply of housebuilding, with the North West and North East seen as other problem areas.