The Government looks set to fall short of its one million housebuilding target by 2020, by around 80,000 new homes.
Data from the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) shows that the number of new homes started between when the pledge was first made in 2015 and the end of 2017 was 386,160, while the amount of new builds in the process of being built rose by 7,235 over the past two years.
If this average rate of growth were maintained, it would create another 529,950 homes by 2020, providing a total of 916,110 – a shortfall of 83,890.
More recently, the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, pledged to build 300,000 homes per year by the mid-2020s, which seems an even more unrealistic ambition, given the shortfall for the current target.
Sam Mitchell, the Chief Executive of online estate agent HouseSimple.com, comments: “It could be a case of better-late-than-never if the rate of building growth is to be believed, but it’s going to be a tall order to keep this going for the next seven years.
“The Government’s main concern should be the anticipated failure to deliver on its most basic pledge to build one million homes by the end of 2020. If they fail, critics will simply paint the more lofty aspirations to build 300,000 homes a year as a piece of political theatre.”
He continues: “This issue deserves to be more than a distraction for voters, and it would help if the revolving door of housing ministers were to stop.
“The housing crisis is real and affordability problems play havoc with other parts of the economy, as first time buyers in particular are forced to part with significant chunks of their disposable income in order to get on the housing ladder.”
Are you surprised by the Government’s shortfall in delivering its housebuilding targets?