Jun 05

House prices could quadruple if no action on housebuilding

England faces a deepening housing crisis if the next government doesn’t commit to a radical programme of house building, a KPMG and Shelter report has warned.

The landmark report, released today, outlines how the 2015 government could turn the tide on the nation’s housing shortage within a single parliament. As a country we’re building just less than half of the 250,000 new homes a year needed to keep up with demand.

New research estimates that average house prices would be over £900,000 by 2034 if current trends continue – a quadrupling of current prices. The research also shows more and more people priced out of a home of their own as housing costs soar – a trend that could see more than half of 20 to 34 year olds living with their parents by 2040.

KPMG and Shelter’s report sets out essential reforms to increase the supply of affordable housing and stabilise England’s rollercoaster housing market. It calls on politicians to commit to a range of key measures, including:

– Releasing infrastructure spending to unlock stalled house-building sites
– Setting up a ‘Help to build’ scheme, using government guarantees to help small builders access the market
– Introducing a new National Housing Investment Bank to finance affordable house building
– Putting housing at the centre of City Deals, giving towns and cities the power to build the homes their communities need.

Marianne Fallon, UK Head of Corporate Affairs at KPMG, said: ‘What is clear from our report is just how big and messy our housing problem is.  For many people, particularly those in their twenties, the aspiration of owning their own ‘castle’ is fast becoming a fairy tale. We also know, as an employer of 12,000 people, that an unstable housing market affects our ability to attract and retain talent.

‘However, our report shows that a government which is prepared to roll up its sleeves and commit to a programme to tackle each element of the problem, over a parliament and beyond, has the chance to make home ownership a realistic dream again.’

Campbell Robb, Chief Executive of Shelter, said that thousands of young families were paying the price for successive governments’ failure to build enough homes:

‘With housing now a top issue for voters, politicians of all parties are rightly beginning to feel the need to act.

‘This isn’t just a blueprint for how to get Britain building, it’s a blueprint for how to restore the aspirations of a generation who’ve been left with little hope of a home of their own.’