Scotland’s housing deficit growing as drop in new homes starts continues

HFS Chief Executive Jane Wood

THE LATEST Scottish Government housing statistics (released today) reveal the drop in the number of new homes that are being started to be built across all sectors is continuing to grow, with a 12 per cent decrease in the year to end September 2022 compared to the previous 12 months.

This is set to add to the housing shortfall of more than 110,000 homes that has accumulated in Scotland since 2007 when pre-financial crisis completion levels were 25,000.

Jane Wood, Chief Executive of sector body Homes for Scotland (HFS), which represents members delivering the majority of the country’s new homes, said:

“Whilst there was a much needed ten per cent increase in the number of new homes completed in the year to end September 2022 (up 2,023 to 22,905) , this positive news is again offset by the 12 per cent overall fall in the number of starts (down 2,580 to 19,227).  Particularly worrying in the context of the Scottish Government’s Affordable Housing ambitions is the 27 per cent drop recorded in housing association approvals.

“The appointment of the new First Minister presents the perfect opportunity to review the regulatory areas and other issues creating blockers to residential development across sectors to ensure that housing in Scotland meets the needs and aspirations of everyone living here.  We and our members are committed to achieving this.”

From the Scottish Government’s Housing Statistics for Scotland Quarterly Update: New Housebuilding and Affordable Housing Supply (published 28 March 2023)

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