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Housebuilding initiatives could be affected by house prices and the movement of workers

Housebuilding initiatives could be affected by house prices and the movement of workers

House prices across England and Wales rose 1.3% in January, the Land Registry has said, reaching a national average price of £179,492. The North West outpaced other regions, with growth of 2.6%. The only regions to register a fall in average house price were Yorkshire and the Humber, down 1.5% and London, which dipped 0.2%, pushing down the annual rate of residential inflation in the city to its lowest level in a year. The average price in the capital fell to £458,283, which, nevertheless, is 12% higher than in the same month last year. The biggest fall in prices was seen in the borough Kensington & Chelsea, where property values declined by 1.9%. However, in Camden house prices rose 1.9% month-on-month, while those in Newham jumped 23.4% year-on-year. Sales of homes for £2m or more fell 38% to 160, possibly due to fears over the mooted “mansion tax”.

Population variances of London boroughs highlighted

Meanwhile, a report from Savills has noted that in the first week of February the population of London has topped the 8.6m peak set in 1939. However, the report shows that the population trends vary from borough to borough. While populations in the inner London boroughs such as Islington, Westminster, Camden, Hackney, Tower Hamlets, Southwark, Kensington & Chelsea and the City have all either peaked or are declining, others are showing significant population growth. Hillingdon, for example, has seen rapid growth – growing by 32% between 1939 and 1951 alone – it is now home to 274,000 residents. Separately, estate agency eMoov last week named Ruislip as the best place to buy property in London. It found that the average house price in Ruislip was £345,000 and 78% of all properties put on the market there in the last month had either been sold or received an offer. IBB’s team of property solicitors can advise on all aspects of buying, selling and mortgaging property. We are always happy to speak to you about the progress of your sale/purchase on the telephone at any time. For more information or advice from our residential conveyancing solicitors in Buckinghamshire, call us today on 01494 790013 or 01494 790071 or email conveyancing@ibblaw.co.uk.

Housebuilding initiatives

Business Secretary Vince Cable expressed concerns this week over how geographical divides in house prices could be limiting the movement of workers. He wants to encourage housebuilders to use new technology to build homes faster and cheaper. On Thursday, he announced a £22m grant to boost the development of flat-pack houses, with parts manufactured off-site before being pieced together at the development. Steve Turner, of the Home Builders Federation , said there was an acute housing shortage, but a balance needed to be struck between building speed and quality. The Labour Party has vowed to ensure 200,000 homes built a year by 2020 if it gets into power, partly by giving councils the power to order developers to build on they hold with planning permission. The Conservatives want 100,000 starter homes built for first-timer buyers to buy cheaper than the norm. Our New Homes team acts for both local and national housebuilders in the sale of completed developments to both owner occupiers and investors.

The National Housebuilding Council (NHBC) has also said that the number of social homes being built has fallen by 14% year-on-year over the past three months, despite the need for social stock accelerating. NHBC found that the number of properties constructed for affordable or social rent fell in every region in England, in contrast to Scotland, Ireland and Wales, where considerably more stock was built. The English Housing Survey revealed that the number of families with children privately renting has tripled in 10 years, with 1.5m families now inhabiting PRS homes. To discuss your social housing matter, call our residential development and house building legal experts now on 01895 207803, or email your details to housebuilders@ibblaw.co.uk.

IBB has one of the largest real estate groups in West London and the South East, with expertise in commercial development, residential development, real estate finance, real estate investment and management, construction and real estate dispute resolution. Contact a member of the team by visiting the relevant service page, or you can call us on 08456 381 381 or email enquiries@ibblaw.co.uk.