Housing, on the road to recovery? (UK)

The UK government (Communities and Local Government) has confirmed that there has been a second successive quarterly rise in seasonally adjusted housing starts in England.

Starts in England are up 63% on last quarter, building on the 13% increase in the previous quarter. From a low point of 16,210 starts in Oct-Dec 2008 there were nearly 30,000 starts this quarter. The majority of this growth is seen the private sector but it is significant that registered social landlords have posted their highest ever quarterly starts figure.

The picture varies across the Country; a 116% increase quarter-on-quarter helped the South East reverse the 12-month trend of falling housing starts and London starts were up 12% on last year's June quarter, the largest rise in the Country. The West Midlands also increased its starts year-on-year but all other regions were down in comparison with last year.

Gerald Eve planning and development partner Peter Dines said: "Clearly there is still a long way to go to recovery, which to an extent is reliant on bank lending returning, but these latest statistics should provide encouragement to the sector.

"Whilst the news is generally very positive for social landlords it is interesting to note that their performance in London has significantly slowed in comparison with all other regions. This supports Mayor Boris Johnson's claim that London is being short changed by Government as it channels housing funds away from the Capital."

Source: Brown Lloyd James Financial

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