NHF | Home Truths 2015/16 – the housing market in the SW

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Home Truths 2015/16 – the housing market in the SW

Home Truths is the National Housing Federation’s annual report on the housing market in England. Each of our nine regional editions include local data on affordability, unemployment rates and the shortfall in housing supply.

There is an acute housing crisis in the South West. The region is large and diverse, made up of rural communities, historical towns and cities and long stretches of coast, with some pockets of deprivation. The average price of a home in the South West is just over £240,000 and in desirable areas such as The Cotswolds, the average price increases by 50%. Compared to the average salary, homes in the region are ten times more expensive.

NHF SW infographic

Our 2015/16 South West Home Truths report also found:

  • The average price of a home in the South West is just over £240,000 – 10 times the average local salary.
  • South West households would need an annual pay rise of more than £30,000 to afford an average home.
  • The average cost of renting in the region is nearly £700 per month and these costs swallow up more than a third of local incomes.
  • Work is no guarantee of being able to pay for housing costs, with the number of employed people claiming housing benefit, up 22% since 2008.
  • Last year 6,500 too few homes were built to keep up with demand and around 441,000 new households are expected to form in the South West by 2037.

Housing associations are a key part of the solution to our housing crisis. They invest in communities, house five million people in England and built 50,000 homes last year, 40% of all new homes in the country. Housing associations are now working in partnership with the Government to deliver the homes this country needs to end the housing crisis.

Solving the housing crisis

Britain is in the midst of a housing crisis that has been a generation in the making. This is experienced differently across the country and requires a range of interventions rather than a single solution.

It was no surprise that housing was a top five vote-deciding issue at the last election. The public is demanding action and the Government is responding with a range of initiatives designed to increase supply and help people get a foot on the property ladder.

We have a once in a generation opportunity to tackle the housing crisis and deliver the homes the country so desperately needs.

Public attitudes towards housebuilding have shifted and now twice as many people support more new homes being built in their local area. The devolution agenda also provides promising new opportunities for addressing England’s housing challenges on a local level.

Housing associations are a key part of the solution to our housing crisis. They are amongst the most successful public private partnerships in Britain’s history, securing £75bn in private investment since the Conservative Government’s Housing Act in 1988. For every £1 invested by the taxpayer, associations put in £6 of their own money. They invest in communities, house five million people in England and built 50,000 homes last year, 40% of all new homes in the country and one third of all new homes over the last Parliament. Housing associations work to make home ownership more affordable, having helped over 275,000 people to buy their own home over the last 30 years and want to help even more.

By providing secure homes for all we can build a foundation on which anyone and everyone can make a better life for themselves and thousands more people can achieve their aspiration of a home to call their own. We can close the gap between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ and end the housing crisis within a generation.

The housing crisis in the South West

There is an acute housing crisis in the South West. The region is large and diverse, made up of rural communities, historical towns and cities and long stretches of coast, with some pockets of deprivation. The average price of a home in the South West is just over £240,000 and in desirable areas such as The Cotswolds, the average price increases by 50%. Compared to the average salary, homes in the region are ten times more expensive and households would need an annual pay rise of more than £30,000 to afford an average home.

Renting privately is also becoming less affordable compared to average pay packets with prices continuing to climb. The average cost of renting is nearly £700 per month and these costs swallow up more than a third of local incomes, more than the national average.

Work is no guarantee of being able to pay for housing costs, with the number of employed people claiming housing benefit up 22% since 2008.

There are nowhere near enough homes being built in the South West. Last year 6,500 too few homes were built to keep up with demand and unless action is taken now, this problem is only set to get more acute. Around 441,000 new households are expected to form in the South West by 2037.

With the highest level of second homes anywhere in the country and house prices continuing to increase, home ownership remains a pipe dream for many in the South West.

NHF SW table

 

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