UK Construction Media

Rics says drastic housing shortage is pushing up prices

News   •   Nov 10, 2016 12:01 GMT

Surveyors have warned of a “dire shortage” of housing in the UK, which is leading to escalating house prices.

The warning from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (Rics), comes ahead of a government White Paper on housing supply, expected this month.

Rics said that those looking to buy a house were returning to the market after the EU referendum in June. However, there was not enough property for them to buy, and prices were continuing to rise across most areas of the country.

In October, surveyors seeing price rises outnumbered those seeing falls by a majority of 23%. That compares with 18% in September, with the only exception being Central London, where Rics said price there have now fallen for the eighth month in a row.

Rics Chief Economist, Simon Rubinsohn, said: “The dire shortage of available housing across the UK is continuing to push prices upwards, regardless of the uncertainty linked to the ongoing discussions surrounding Brexit.”

A new fund has already been launched by the government to help build 225,000 extra houses, and further measures are expected to be announced in a White Paper, which could be published as soon as the Autumn Statement on 23 November.

Plans to encourage small developers, and to speed up housebuilding on land where planning permission has already been granted is expected to be in the paper.

The CBI business organisation has already called for more help for smaller house builders, and the faster release of public land. Last month, the Communities Secretary, Sajid Javid, told the Conservative Party conference: “The big developers must release their stranglehold on supply.

“It’s time to stop sitting on land banks, delaying build-out: the homebuyers must come first.”

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