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Housing crisis 'should be tackled with small developments'

The Federation of Master Builders (FMB) has claimed the government could effectively tackle the ongoing housing crisis that is being witnessed across the UK by shifting its attention to small-scale developments in the coming years.

FMB chief executive Brian Berry argued the development of "micro sites" that exist in every town and city across the UK could be the key to delivering more new homes.

Indeed, Mr Berry noted that while the government's ongoing support for major housing projects is extremely welcome within the construction industry, Westminster needs to take action soon to address the key issue of a lack of new homes for members of the public who simply wish to purchase their own property.

He commented: "The last time we built over 200,000 homes in England was in the late 1980s when SME house builders delivered over two thirds of our housing. Since then the number of smaller house builders has declined by 69 per cent and they now deliver only around one third of our housing."

Tackling this decline should therefore be a top priority, with deregulation and a reduction in red tape highlighted by Mr Berry as being some of the most effective tools the government could use to help promote the development of more small-scale projects over the coming years.

Mr Berry's comments follow a recent announcement from deputy prime minister Nick Clegg, who stated that an additional £225 million is to be injected into UK home construction activity in the coming months.

He revealed the government's new plans at a meeting of the National House-Building Council, outlining a new goal for the delivery of 48,600 homes in the coming year.

Mr Clegg argued: "We can either condemn ourselves to haphazard urban sprawl - the surest way to damage the countryside - or we can build places people want to live." 

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