We Must Start Building for the Future Now, Not Talk about It. While the UK Housing Industry Has Come under Scrutiny from Both Sides of the Political Spectrum, Westminster Has Yet to Come Up with Any Practical Solutions to the Homebuilders' Problems, Writes Smartnewhomes.com's David Bexon
THE housing industry has been brought firmly under the microscope in recent weeks, providing another battleground for the political heavyweights as they slugged it out in the run up to and at their respective annual party conferences.
Something of a tug of war has been taking place, as each side attempts to score points over the other, with consumers and industry professionals mere spectators, bemused at the lack of significant ground made by either group.
In early September, the Government announced plans to fund the construction of 2,000 council homes.
This was a step in the right direction, offering some indication that the Government at least recognises it must do more to help boost the supply of suitable and affordable family housing.
However, it only goes a small way towards easing some of the pressure currently facing developers.
The Conservatives responded by calling for councils to focus on renovating existing properties as opposed to producing new homes, amid suggestions from the Audit Commission that there is too much emphasis on building.
The massive level of pent-up demand we are now witnessing across many areas of the country, resulting from the severe lack of construction in the past two years, strongly suggests otherwise.
Supporting the production of new, energy-efficient homes is a crucial, progressive move that would go some way to meeting the nation's housing needs, while supporting the construction industry with much-needed new employment.
Although the Government has so far fallen short in its commitment to sustained public intervention in this area, the sector is yet to hear any constructive Conservative motions on how they intend to address this issue.
The Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA) published a discussion paper on the current housing shortfall during the week of the Labour party conference.
The report brought the extent of the new home crisis under the Government spotlight, highlighting a one million shortfall of new homes in England by the end of next year. …