Today, ONS statistics on new build dwellings were released – these are quarterly statistics (which ought not to be compared with annual statistics) covering the period from October to December 2018. These statistics are useful indicators of annual housebuilding statistics as trends can be deduced from the same quarter in previous years – they are less useful if comparing with previous quarters in the same year as housebuilding is seasonal in many respects.
While housebuilding figures are significantly higher than in the aftermath of the financial crash, after seeing a long period of housebuilding growth, this quarter we saw stagnation or even a slight decline. Completions continue to increase, albeit at a slower rate, with starts decreasing.
New build dwelling starts in England were estimated at 40,580 (seasonally adjusted) in the October to December 2018 quarter, an 8% decrease compared to the previous quarter and a 2% decrease on the same quarter last year. Completions were estimated at 42,970 (seasonally adjusted), a 2% increase from the previous quarter and 1% higher than October to December last year.
Annual new build dwelling starts totalled 165,160 in the year to December 2018, no change compared with the year to December 2017. During the same period, completions totalled 165,090 an increase of 1% compared with last year.
Private enterprise new build dwelling starts (seasonally adjusted) in the December quarter are down 9% from the previous quarter, however, completions are up by 2%. In a similar vein, starts by housing associations are 11% per cent lower than the previous, but completions are up by 4%.
Click here to read the statistical release in full.