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UK house build target missed by huge 1.2 million

Paloma Kubiak
Written By:
Paloma Kubiak

The UK’s house building deficit stands at 1.2 million properties and it’s growing, according to new analysis.

Yorkshire Building Society research shows that the average number of homes built each year between 2008 and 2015 is 30% below pre-crisis levels.

The mutual noted that the house building recommendations set in the Barker Review (270,000 a year) in 2004 have never been met. Instead they have been missed by a huge 1,199,180 since the review was published.

Plus, it warned that the issue could become more acute as a result of uncertainty caused by Brexit.

Housing gap

In 2015, the government set the UK house building target by pledging to build one million homes over its five-year term. However, 142,890 homes were built in 2015 as a whole, 29% less than the 200,000 homes which would need to be built per year to reach the one million target by 2020.

The government’s target of building 200,000 homes per year is now at least 70,000 properties a year short of what the country needs.

Andrew McPhillips, chief economist at Yorkshire Building Society, said: “The Brexit decision and the uncertainty it creates around the prospects for private sector house builders, not to mention the country’s economic outlook, is likely to heighten the housing crisis.

“The longer we leave the supply crisis to worsen, the more difficult it will be to resolve. The UK has failed to build the number of homes needed to meet demand year after year, which has consequently inflated prices and made it even more difficult for those looking to buy. House building has remained stagnant ever since the financial crisis, and this lack of activity illustrates that the current system needs a serious overhaul if the country is to build enough homes.”