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Starts and completions on new build homes highest level since 2008

News   •   Feb 25, 2016 16:01 GMT

New figures show that the number of starts and completions on new build homes continued to rise last year to highest level since 2008.

More than 143,500 new build homes were started up to December 2015, rising by 23% on the same quarter a year earlier and up to 91% when compared to the low point of the year up to June 2009, according to new figures released today.

The House Building: December quarter 2015 also showed that the number of new build homes completed were up 21% on the previous year.

Starts and completions of new build homes are at their highest level since 2008, with more than 700,000 new build homes started since April 2010.

The new figures show that reforms to the planning system are delivering the permissions needed, with schemes like Help to Buy, which have given builders the confidence to invest and built, with starts and completions now at their highest since 2008.

Housing Minister Brandon Lewis said: “We’ve got the country building again with starts nearly double the low point of 2009 and along with completions hitting a 7-year high.

“However we’re not complacent. That’s why we’ve set out the most ambitious housing vision for more than a generation, doubling the housing budget so we can meet our ambition of delivering a million new homes.”

Figures published today from the Home Builders Federation show a 12% rise in planning permission on the same quarter last year. Planning permission for 59,875 homes was granted in England during the third quarter of last year, up 12% from 53,409 permissions in the corresponding quarter of the previous year.

The Housing Minister added: “Our planning reforms are helping to get spades in the ground with a quarter of a million planning permissions granted up to September last year – higher than the pre-recession peak in 2007.

“And we want to go even further. That is why just last week we set out ambitious proposals that will speed up the planning process, including offering dedicated fast-track application services.”

The government is committed to delivering on its ambition to build a million more homes. Measures include new affordable Starter Homes, permission in principle for sites identified in plans and brownfield registers and planning reforms to support small builders – requiring councils to ensure they have permission shovel ready plots to match the local demand for custom build.

Figures from the English Housing Survey showing that more than a decade-long decline, which started in 2003 for the amount of people owning their own home, has now turned around with more than 14 million owner occupiers in the country last year.

Lending to first-time buyers is also at its highest since 2007.

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