Housebuilding Growth

The National Housebuilding Council has reported that the greatest number of new home registrations have taken place in March 2011 than have taken place for over three years.

The highest monthly number for NHBC recorded new home starts was announced last week by the NHBC suggesting that more NHBC registered housing large scale house builders have registered new starts of buildings in March than has been the case for some considerable time.

Both the private and the public sectors registered start numbers increased.  In excess of 13,300 new homes were registered in the UK which is the largest reported monthly figure since 2007.  The figure equates to a 21% increase year on year (11,018 in March 2010) and a 49% increase on February’s figure of 8,917. 

A large proportion of the new registrations (2,800) appear to have been for the Athletes’ Village for the Olympic games.  However, ignoring this anomaly, monthly registrations were still the highest they have been for some eight months (some 10,638 registered in July 2010).

The number of private sector registrations during March 2011 reached 7,980 which was by itself, the highest number since April 2008.  The number of public sector registrations increased 34% year on year (3,984 in March 2010 up to 5,327).

Imtiaz Farookhi, chief executive of NHBC, said:  “March’s figures offer encouragement to the sector during a month in which the Coalition’s Budget announced significant changes for all house builders.  Planning strategy, the zero carbon definition of a new home and the New Homes Bonus were all included in the Budget and the fact that new home registrations held up is a positive sign.

“While a large proportion of registrations were driven by plans at the Athletes’ Village, housing analysts have reported better than expected growth in house building during the first quarter of 2011 and our figures for March certainly reflect this positivity.  Hopefully Government measures designed to incentivise the building and buying of new homes will deliver a level of stability and reassurance for the market and encourage its growth.”

Liam Bunclark, Managing Chartered Surveyor with commented, “It is often the rolling quarterly figures that reflect the trend and truly reflect what the larger scale NHBC registered builders have in terms of either firm orders from the public sector or believe that the market will stand in terms of sales in the private sector.

“The news therefore is a further sign of the recovery in the construction sector and the wider economy and provides solid grounds for increased optimism.”

These figures showed for the rolling quarter (January 2011 – March 2011 ~30,012), a seven per cent rise on the same period a year ago (27,974) but was the highest rolling quarter since May to July 2010 (30,771).

NHBC statistics for the rolling quarter January 2011 – March 2011 show that:

Private sector registrations were up 4% (to 19,092) when compared with the same period a year ago (18,412)

Public sector registrations were up 14%, from 9,562 a year ago to 10,920 this quarter.

Dated 28th April 2011