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The UK’s population is set to grow
by about 6 million people, from 64
to 70 million, over the next 15 years.
Office for National Statistics, October 2015
Britain leaves - housing need remains
04 July 2016

A week in and it seems as though the country is still coming to terms with a future outside of the European Union. Short-term instability was to be expected, but as this settles down, thoughts turn to what leaving will actually mean for the property industry

It is far too early to understand the impact on planning system overall. While there could be a future impact relating to long-term investment and population, the fact remains that we still urgently need more homes. In fact, new build completions totalled only 140,000 in 2015/16 - a significant shortfall against both the Government’s commitment to build 1 million new homes by 2020, and the projected level of household growth – approximately 215,000 per annum.

The settlement that the UK negotiates with the EU will have a significant bearing on what happens to immigration from EU countries as well to the amount of funds received by the regions for their growth agenda, therefore the impact of Brexit on local housing demand will not be fully understood for some time. Factors include the UK’s standing within the global economy, availability of EU Structural Funding (or alternative), as well as details of the UK Government’s Policy Response, including any limits and measures which may be imposed on the movement of people. Until these points become clear, local authorities and the housebuilding industry must work on the basis of business as usual – particularly given the long standing crisis in the housing market and the housing shortfall that still remains.