Government 2020 housing targets ‘unlikely to be met’

New research by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, shows the government is likely to be woefully shy of its own target of three million new homes by 2020.

Government 2020 housing targets 'unlikely to be met'

If the Government were to reach this target, it would need to build 240,000 homes every year ¬- a rate not achieved at any point since the early 1990s.

The report was produced by a team of researchers from universities in Manchester, Glasgow and Ulster and also highlights the following areas of concern:

There are shortages in housing in many parts of the country particularly in southern Wales, large parts of southern and central England and Northern Ireland.

Inequality between regional areas is a major concern. For example: house prices in South East and South West England are ten times average household incomes in many neighbourhoods.

Housing supply and affordability will continue to be a problem due to the effects of the economic downturn and a projected increase in household numbers.

The Housing and Neighbourhoods monitor, produced for the JRF by a team of researchers from Manchester University, Glasgow University and Ulster University, analyses key housing and neighbourhood trends across the UK.

Cecilia Wong, Professor at University of Manchester and Project Manager said: “What is clear is that there is an urgent need for more nuanced policy -making that takes better account of the characteristics of an area, especially how local housing markets function.”

Many of the issues highlighted by the Housing and Neighbourhood Monitor such as supply and demand and housing affordability are being examined in more depth by JRF’s Housing Market Taskforce.

Established in July to look into the root causes of instability in the housing market, it will provide a series of recommendations in late 2010.

About Fiona Russell-Horne

Group Managing Editor across the BMJ portfolio.

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