Build for world we live in

Brexit 'will not mean less new housebuilding'

Brexit 'will not mean less new housebuilding'

Claims that the building of hundreds of thousands of new homes will no longer be necessary due to potentially lower immigration levels following Brexit have been questioned by the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML).
 
The CML noted that such suggestions have emerged from certain sections of the press - such as the Daily Telegraph - who are against building in the countryside, fearing that the green belt and other areas will be concreted over.

However, it suggested the numbers do not fit this claim. The CML said assumptions that net migration will drop to 170,500 from 2020/21 - the first year after Brexit - ignore the fact that in the past year there were 164,000 migrants from outside the EU as well as 165,000 from the other EU member states. It questioned whether it is plausible that EU migration would all but disappear.

In particular, the CML noted, the government has already indicated that there will be continued access for professional workers such as doctors, although these account for less than a fifth of EU migration. But there are other trades to consider, not least the nine per cent of the UK's workforce that comes from the EU.

The CML said that projections in the reduction of overall migration - from the 100,000 forecasted by pressure group Migration Watch to the 52,000 predicted by the Global Futures thinktank - would still leave net migration higher than 170,500, albeit only by 2,500 if Migration Watch turns out to be right.

Against that, the CML suggested, the UK is not yet building enough homes to meet the pre-referendum projection of 227,000 new households a year anyway, with last year only getting to 190,000. Add in factors such as second home buying, it argued, and the need to keep building more properties is clear.

The issue of migration is one that many advocates of Brexit campaigned on, but not all. While UKIP focused on the issue, its sole MP at the time, Douglas Carswell, disagreed with this position. He has now left the party and will sit as an independent.

Image: iStock

 

--- Ends ---

Return to news index

Build for world we live in