New Homes Week: National association of property buyers calls on chancellor to turbo-charge housebuilding

A leading property association has urged the Chancellor needs to put housebuilding at the centre of next week’s Budget.

Speaking in New Homes Week, the National Association Of Property Buyers, warned a chronic lack of affordable properties is still “plaguing every corner of the UK”.

Spokesman Jonathan Rolande said: “The current projections around house building are way under what the market actually needs to drag itself out of this supply crisis.

“The Government and Labour speak of 300,000 new homes a year. We need way more than this because there is still a chronic lack of good, affordable new housing across the UK.

“So much is at stake. We  risk preventing  an entire generation from ever owning the keys to their own home. That’s why it is vital that Jeremy Hunt puts house building at the centre of his Budget next week and provides a genuine roadmap to how we can turbocharge housebuilding.

“We also need to go further and faster on using more available land. Right now we are seeing delays, hold-ups and red tape plaguing construction plans in virtually every corner of the UK. This in turn is putting many of the big house building firms off when it comes to committing to projects this year and beyond. Those companies will be listening intently next week to what Mr Hunt plans to do.”

Mr Rolande said the situation is all the more pressing because activity remains high in the market.

“People currently do want to buy and sell,” he said. “Demand is there. But, all too often, people then step away from the market because of a total lack of availability in their area.”

For those who are lucky enough to secure a new property this week, Mr Rolande has outlined his checklist of things to remember.

He advises:

*Before you shake on a deal and decide whether to buy or not, there’s a lot to consider.  Consider what might prices do, will you be happy long-term in the home and the area, can you afford repayments as well as improvements or maintenance? I find lots of people worry about whether to buy or not, without considering the options if they don’t. The rental market is booming right now and rents are high. It’s also tricky to find somewhere nice to rent. This may make buying a more attractive option for some.

*Get things included. Very often a seller will be pleased to leave items behind especially if they are moving somewhere smaller. Buyers often get curtains, blinds and kitchen appliances but be cheeky and ask if they want to leave garden furniture or tools to save you buying them on Day One.

*If you’re buying a flat do your own research on the managing agent and freeholder. You’ll usually find online reviews to help build a picture of who you’ll be dealing with, and paying money to.

*Don’t over-confide in the estate agent. They work for the seller. Never say “we’ll offer X but will increase to Y if we have to.” You’ll be sure to end up paying Y or more!

*Think about safety – especially if you’ve rented before. Homeowners don’t have to do safety checks like landlords so you’re responsible when you move in. Have smoke alarms and CO alarms ready for your first day. Don’t use gas appliances if they look old or unsafe and get the electrics checked too.