Property in: LONDON

HBF: 40,000 fewer homes built during Q2

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A new report from the Home Builders Federation (HBF) has highlighted that the decrease in the number of homes being built will affect the housing sector. As a result from Covid-19 pandemic, from March to June, this number dropped by almost 40,000.

Government statistics points on a staggering decline as 30,394 new homes were completed in Q2 2020, which is less than half of the 69,100 built in the same period last year, although the industry was expected for year-on-year growth.

HBF adds: "These figures also highlight the wider impact for local communities given the subsequent loss of local contributions and community benefits that come with the development of new homes."

In the report, government figures show that over the past year, developers have contributed more than £ 7 billion through Section 106 agreements and other mechanisms.

In education, the donations raised enough funds to hire 8,500 new teachers, green spaces to plant 8.6 million trees, and a municipal tax to build 25,000 miles of road or fill 53 million potholes.

The report also suggests creating a public badging system to raise awareness of the vital contributions of developers to communities. The diagram will denote the public assets that the builders have funded through a blue plaque or sign.

HBF also offers contributions to developers that cannot be spent as intended, returned directly to the relevant community, not the developer.

According to a YouGov poll, which showed the need for these measures to raise public awareness, 73% of respondents associate housing construction with increased pressure on facilities and services.

HBF’s executive chairman Stewart Baseley said:

"Coronavirus resulted in the closure of housebuilding sites and so inevitably output this year will fall. As well as undermining progress made in recent years to reduce our housing shortfall, this will reduce the huge contribution development makes to community infrastructure and local economies."

"Our report shows the true value of home building, not just in terms of bricks and mortar, but in the investment that comes with it for local communities, from building schools and hospitals to parks and leisure centres."

"A public badging scheme would go some way to improving awareness among the public about what development can mean for their communities."

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