MBE 2016: government must build houses itself

Ryan Fowler

October 13, 2016

The government should start building houses to ease the UK’s housing demand crisis, according to Castle Trust chief executive Matthew Wyles. 

The UK needs 250,000 properties to be built a year to keep up with demand but based on recent years it is unlikely that figure will be achieved.

House building targets have consistently been missed – the closest the UK got was in 2006-07 when 219,000 homes were built.

In 2012-13, the UK hit a post-war low of 135,500 homes, much of which was due to the financial crisis.

Wyles said: “The big six house builders in the UK are all working to their limits – and using this to their advantage.

“I think we need the government to start building homes directly, until the prices start to come down.

“This may be a controversial view, but it seems this is the only way forward.”

Wyles comments follow a recent cross-party House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee call on the government to be more involved in the housebuilding process.

Back in July the committee said the government had to “recognise the inability of the private sector, as currently incentivised, to build the number of homes needed” and called on it to increase its building targets by 50%.

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