House Building Association responds to John Penrose MP’s article on PoliticsHome.

John Penrose MP stated that the housing crisis can only be solved by allowing developers to build on existing buildings.

This comment came after the publication of the Government’s Housing White Paper, which proposes change to height limits of residential buildings in urban areas.

The House Building Association (HBA) believes that relaxing restrictions on buildings’ height limits would benefit urban areas with a shortage of available building sites. This could be a way of identifying new space for homes without generating local opposition to further development.

The UK needs to build 300,000 homes a year, but only 170,730 homes were completed in 2015. That is why we need to look at the barriers to building new homes, especially for SME house builders.

SME house builders could play a much greater role in tackling the housing crisis, if more is done to facilitate access to finance and open up smaller sites to a greater degree. SMEs understand the needs of their local communities can be build homes more quickly and are instrumental in delivering housing according to local needs.

Working within a 15-mile radius of their head office, SMEs hire local workers, train local apprentices and provide value for money. For every £1 invested with the SMEs, 90p remains in the local economy.

Rico Wojtulewicz, policy advisor for the HBA, said: “We need to build the homes that ordinary people both want and need through faster and more thought-through housing delivery. SMEs are uniquely placed to do that. The Government needs to enable SME house builders achieve their full potential.

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