Figures released by the National House-Builders Council (NHBC) indicate a decline in overall house-building during 2012 with 104,510 new homes registered during 2012 – a 9% decrease on 2011 (114,930).
This decline was entirely contributable to public sector housing registrations dropping from 36,680 in 2011, to 26,390 in 2012. However, the level of private house-building in the UK was stable during 2012, with 78,120 new homes registered, compared to 78,250 in 2011.
Commenting on the annual statistics for 2012, NHBC commercial director, Richard Tamayo, said: “It was a challenging year for the house building industry overall but ended on an encouraging note with Q4 figures 17% up on the same period for 2011.
“With government-backed schemes such as NewBuy and Funding for Lending helping to increase mortgage availability, there are reasons to believe that 2013 may see the industry able to build on some of the positive momentum we saw towards the end of 2012, which does seem to be carrying over into January.
"Nonetheless, with house-building volumes so far below the numbers desperately needed in the UK, this is clearly an issue that needs to remain at the heart of government policy."
The diagram shows (with number of homes represented by the figures on the left) final 2012 figures for the social housing sector significantly down on those of 2011. A new timetable of the National Affordable Housing Programme for this year as well as further government action should lead to increased levels of public sector building, an NHBC spokesperson said. The NHBC is a warranty and insurance provider for new homes.
Office of National Statistics (ONS) figures released on 25 January showed a small upward contribution from the construction sector towards the growth in total output between two consecutive quarters.
Construction output was estimated to have increased by 0.3% in Q4, 2012 compared with Q3, 2012, following a decrease of 2.5% between Q2, 2012 and Q3, 2012. Construction output decreased by 11.0% between 2011 Q4 and 2012 Q4.