With construction workers currently at the top of the dole list, self build specialist BuildStore is calling for more funding from lenders to help meet the demand for self build and pull construction workers out of the dole queue.
The company is reporting enough demand to double its mortgage lending to self builders and boost the flagging construction sector with thousands of new jobs, saving the state tens of millions of pounds in benefit payments.
The potential for larger scale self build is significant, says BuildStore, and its enquiry levels in 2009 demonstrate that there is a growing demand from frustrated homeowners.
BuildStore normally arranges around £500m in self build mortgages every year, but is appealing to lenders, including state-funded banks and local building societies, for more funds to meet the demand and boost the construction industry, supporting local labour supply and skill bases, and providing investment in local communities.
Raymond Connor, chief executive of BuildStore, says: “It is a critical time for the housing market, and we believe that self build housing can play a big role in kick-starting activity, by providing new homes and new jobs. BuildStore believes that the social and economic benefits of self building are too significant to ignore, and is therefore urging lenders to make an allowance, however small, for the self build mortgage market.
“State-funded banks now have an obligation to put money back into the economy and local building societies could be doing more to support their local communities. Further investment in self build lending will help solve the housing shortage and can help to bring skilled tradesmen off the dole and provide real investment for local communities.”
BuildStore says self-build has proved resilient during the credit crunch, with a panel of lenders still providing up to 95% funding for land and build costs through BuildStore.