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Many schemes need big infrastructure before housebuilding can begin

Recently, Sajid Javid MP told the National House Building Council that the Government would take action with regard to land banking by property developers…

I don’t think they will fix the housing crisis as long as local government is involved. They take far too long to make decisions.

Most ‘land banking’ is done by the strategic land players, not by housebuilders, but even they are not as bad as they are being painted.

Many major schemes need massive offsite infrastructure before building houses can begin. For example, Houghton Regis in Bedfordshire, where two new motorway junctions have to be built.

Mark Hanson, The Guinness Partnership

House prices have peaked and will start to fall as landlords depart

Hometrack said last week that the gap between income and house prices was at a record high…

The good news for first-time buyers is that house prices have peaked and they will begin to fall once buy-to-let investors with highly geared portfolios start exiting the market from next April.

This, combined with the increase in housebuilding, will mean there will be an excess supply of property, which will dampen prices further.

In the meantime, as inflation takes off, hopefully incomes will increase and the gap between house prices and earnings will narrow significantly over the next five years.

Colin Cloy, IHT Free Investments

All things considered, the housing market is doing alright

Many took the positives out of Nationwide’s House Price Index, which found that house price growth fell slightly in November…

An interesting point to note is that, when comparing year-on-year figures, house-price growth was higher this November (4.4 per cent) than in November 2015 (3.7 per cent).

Given the busy market in the second half of 2015, this is likely to be reassuring for many in the face of the economic and political landscape of the past few months.

In that context, it is quite possible that the fundamentals of the current market will continue as we move towards the end of the year, albeit reflecting the normal seasonal demand cycle in the lead-up to Christmas.

Brian Murphy, Mortgage Advice Bureau

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