There were 20,255 new-build homes completed across all sectors over the year ending December 2018, an increase of 15%, or 2,669 homes, on the previous year, and the highest number of annual completions since 2008.
Scotland’s chief statistician today released the latest quarterly housing statistics for Scotland. The 15% increase in all sector new-build completions in the 12 months to the end of December 2018 included increases in housing association completions (54% or 1,334 homes) and private sector completions (11% or 1,491 homes). However, local authority completions fell by 156 homes (11%). The total number of social sector completions (housing association and local authority starts combined) increased by 1,178 homes (30%).
There were 22,258 all-sector new-build starts in the 12 months to the end of December 2018, an increase of 2,621 homes (13%) on the 19,637 starts in the previous year, and the highest annual starts figure since 2007.
Private-led starts increased by 1,277 homes (9%), housing association approvals increased by 1,038 homes (23%), and local authority starts increased by 306 homes (22%). The total number of social sector starts (housing association and local authority starts combined) increased by 1,344 homes (23%).
In terms of the latest quarterly figures, there were 6,652 new-build homes started between October 2018 and December 2018, which was 49% more (2,199 homes) than the same quarter in 2017. There were 5,553 new-build homes completed between October and December 2018; a 32% increase (1,361 homes) on the same quarter in 2017.
The increases were welcomed by industry body Homes for Scotland. The organisation’s chief executive Nicola Barclay said that it is great to see this rise in the number of new homes, providing choice across all tenures for the residents of Scotland. “80,000 fewer homes than needed have been built in Scotland since the economic crash which has contributed to the chronic undersupply of housing our country faces. We must now build on this solid foundation to ensure that our industry can continue to increase the supply of new homes our growing population needs.
“Ensuring we have a supportive planning system is absolutely fundamental to achieving this. So, as we prepare to enter Stage 3 of the Planning Bill, it is imperative that all of our elected politicians consider the proposed amendments from a housing delivery perspective, asking themselves whether each will help or hinder the building of new homes for their constituents.”