SmartNewHomes.com calls for more family homes

SmartNewHomes.com has called on Gordon Brown to increase the supply of family homes.

It says the new homes market has experienced considerable change over the last 10 years under Tony Blair’s leadership, with a significant shift towards the building of more apartments.

In 1997 when Blair first became Prime Minister, 74% of new homes built were houses, compared to just 26% of apartments.

Over his time in power, the new homes market has experienced a significant shift as developers have striven to meet growing targets in line with government density guidelines, resulting in apartments now making up 56% of the new homes mix.

David Bexon, managing director, SmartNewHomes.com, says: “During Blair’s leadership we have seen a significant shift towards the building of apartments, at the expense of the family home, as developers have little choice when attempting to meet escalating government targets, whilst dealing with a shortage of available land.

“While there is agreement across the industry that demand for housing is outstripping supply, placing an increased emphasis on density is clearly not the answer.

“A plethora of one bedroom apartments will do nothing to meet the needs of the growing number of young families, currently unable to step up the housing ladder due to a lack of affordable, family homes.

“We have already seen an indication that the theme of Brown’s future housing plans will be around the environmentally friendliness of our housing stock, with mention of his ‘Brown’s Towns’ which aim to encourage the development of 100,000 new, ‘green homes’ in five, eco friendly towns.

“However, while ensuring the eco friendliness of new housing stock is of great importance there are a host of other, key issues that need to be addressed.

“A series of additional measures are needed across the residential property market to ensure its future sustainability and an increasingly urgent need for more affordable, family homes should be topping the agenda.

“My advice to Brown would be to work with developers, not against them and to be careful not to choose eco friendliness over consumer friendliness.”