LendInvest publishes a blueprint for change

Jessica Nangle

March 6, 2017

LendInvest is calling on the government to revise its treatment of small and medium sized property investment and development companies.

In a new report, entitled Starting Small To Build More Homes: a blueprint for better policymaking for property SME market, LendInvest brings together industry evidence to examine the root cause and impact of challenges faced by property SMEs.

The issues addressed include constrained access to finance and distorted policy around regulation, taxation, and access to land.

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Christian Faes, co-founder and chief executive of LendInvest, said: “80% of small-scale developers have gone out of business since the last housebuilding boom which is an appalling statistic.

“It’s meant less employment, less entrepreneurialism and fewer new homes on British streets where large-scale housebuilders didn’t pick up the slack.”

The report also illustrates the social and economic contributions that property investment and development SMEs make locally and nationally.

Key findings in the report include four in five housebuilders have gone out of business since the last housebuilding boom, and small housebuilders only deliver  one in eight of the UK’s new homes.

Faes added: “Decades of successive governments’ under-investment, muted decisions and biased preference for large-scale development have left UK housing in a dire situation.

“The Housing White Paper showed us there are no quick fixes, but incremental improvements can and must be made.”

Recommendations LendInvest make in the report include a quota of public land for sale only to SMEs and simplified tax burdens to help property SMEs reinvest capital into business development.

Faes added: “If we’re going to encourage people to forge careers in property, they need to know that their businesses will be treated the same as start-ups and scale-ups in other productive sectors.

“Failing that, we risk losing another generation of property entrepreneurs which mustn’t happen.

“It’s time to mix small-scale housebuilders into the debate and give them the chance to help get Britain building.”

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