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House building levels need to double if the UK is to meet demand

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The current levels of housing supply are ‘hopelessly inadequate’, according to new analysis of the 2011 census data

Figures published today (10 September) by the Town and County Planning Association (TCPA) suggest the scale of housing demand significantly outstrips supply.

According to the report (see attached), around 245,000 new homes are needed every year, with around 60 per cent of this demand in the southern regions. This is considerably higher than the current levels of housing being built, which stands at around 100,000 homes per year.

Kate Henderson, TCPA chief executive said: ‘This research – the first of its kind to analyse the Census 2011 data – is a crucial reminder of the desperate need for more and better housing in the right places. We have a hopelessly inadequate supply of housing and a serious backlog, as well as chronic affordability problems.

‘While house-building levels remain at about 100,000 per year, the Census reveals a staggering need for over 240,000 homes per year. The research also shows that nearly one third of newly arising housing need requires some subsidy; without this investment affordability, overcrowding and ultimately homelessness will worsen’.

She added: ‘We urgently need a new vision for housing and the development of new communities. That new vision has to ensure a substantial increase in the supply of new homes and address affordability. At the same time, we must focus on building successful new communities, whether as part of urban regeneration or through new Garden Cities. This is essential not just to our economic future but also the social and environmental wellbeing of our country.’

Chris Tinker, director at Crest Nicholson, said: ‘This study reaffirms the on-going need for over 240,000 new homes per annum, 60 per cent of which is required in London and the four main Southern regions.

‘With developer’s consented land banks amounting to less than two year’s housing demand there is therefore an urgent need for Local Authorities and developers to work together, especially in key demand areas, to identify and plan for a significant increase in new communities within which well-designed homes can be delivered.

‘A failure to meet housing demand will continue to undermine affordability and put the future prosperity and success of our communities at risk.’

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