Property in Politics

As the party conference season draws to a close, across the political spectrum housing policy has very much come to the fore. A key part of this debate and a well-documented driver of the UK’s housing problems is the inability to build enough homes to meet rising demand. A growing population combined with smaller households looks to continue to pile pressure onto our housing stock. While problems of the housing market stretch beyond simple demand and supply economics, getting more houses built in the areas that need them is an important part of creating a better housing market for everyone. 

In response the government has set a target of 200,000 houses to be built each year, whether this is achievable is yet to be seen, but measures are being put in place to assist. Planning constraints have long been a hurdle to housing supply and the government is trying to lower the barrier. Several changes are in the pipeline; notably a zonal system to give automatic permission to brownfield sites, penalties for Local Authorities that stall on planning applications and an extension of the Permitted Development rights on change of use from office to residential.

On a local level, larger housing schemes such as Barton Farm in Winchester will make an impact, but smaller local and regional developers also have an important part to play and will need to continue to increase their supply. According to the Department for Communities and Local Government, the 2008 economic crash particularly devastated small builders, with delivery falling from 44,000 homes to just 18,000 per year in this category. Seven years on, with funding more readily available, numbers are picking up and demand for suitable sites for development is high.

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With this in mind if you have land or property which you suspect may have potential for residential development the Land Department at Hamptons International would be delighted to investigate the options that may be available and provide free professional and impartial advice. Hamptons International is well placed to offer advice at any stage of the development process, from initial assessment of development potential through to marketing and sale.

James Turpin of the Residential Development and Investment team says: “We are currently advising on a number of opportunities across the south, ranging from office conversions, through to single self-build plots, multiple unit schemes and the promotion of strategic land. Recent successes have seen landowners benefit significantly by Hamptons acting on their behalf enabling them to fully unlock the potential in their assets. Should you suspect that your property has development potential, we would be pleased to discuss the possibilities open to you.”

Contact James at the Winchester branch on 01962 842079