English housing starts highest since 1976

Recently released government statistics show that the rate of construction commencements on new homes across the UK is up by 22% year on year.

The most recent figures cover the 12 months leading up to June, 2014. During that time, 137,780 new residential housing projects were started. However, the statistics exclude Scotland.

In England, an additional 30,410 houses were started in 2013/14, while 500 more constructions began across Wales. For England, this is the highest level of new house starts since 1975/76. The only area to see a fall in numbers was Northern Ireland, where 660 fewer homes were started than in 2012/13.

As expected, the majority of the new starts in England are for the private housing sector. However, during the last quarter housing starts by housing associations began to rise. For that period, they were up by 12%. The same period saw the number of new starts for private homes up by only 2% year on year.

The housing minister, Brandon Lewis, said:

“Wherever you look across the housing market, the signs of progress are clear.”

Looking at the breakdown by area, it is obvious that the growth is not just in the South East of England. As an example, within Merseyside (Met County) there were 4,450 new starts recorded.

This area includes the Wirral, which is undergoing major redevelopment. Over the next few years, 23,000 new apartments are due to be built as part of the Wirral Waters development. Architects on the Wirral are currently working on the plans, which will keep new starts high in this part of the UK.

Posted by Adam Lloyd
September 18, 2014

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