As with the recently published Dwelling Stock Statistics (published May 2019), the latest statistical release 'New Build Dwellings' continues the trend of relative stagnation when compared to the levels of housebuilding in the recovery-years following the financial crash. This growing trend shows the need for a step-change if we are to deliver the homes our country needs.
The statistics, which relate to England-only show housing starts decreasing on a quarterly basis (for the previous quarter and for the same quarter the previous year (9% for both)), a slight increase in housing starts on the previous year (1%), private enterprise starts decreased (7%) as did housing association starts (8%) on the previous quarter.
Completions, in a similar vein, saw a slight decrease (1%) on the previous quarter, however, unlike housing starts, completions were up significantly (14%) on the same quarter for the previous year. There was also an increase in completions on the previous year (4%). But housing association completions decreased (5%), while private enterprise completions were unchanged on the previous quarter.
It is important to note, however, that housing starts in the first quarter of 2019 are now 114% above the March quarter of 2009, with completions 71% above the corresponding March 2013 trough. But both starts and completions remain below the March 2007 peak.
In summary, the picture is therefore stronger for completions than starts, with starts from previous years of significant housebuilding growth working their way through the system. While the sector continues to see growth on previous years, it is clear that the rate of growth is beginning to slow. This can be the result of a variety of factors, especially the rate of growth in recent years making large gains from scaling more difficult to achieve.
Read the full statistical release here.