Figures released by the National House Building Council earlier this year revealed that Wales was the only part of the UK to see a decline in the number of new homes registered to be built; the number of new homes registered in Wales fell by 12% to 3,577 when compared to the 2012 figure of 4,065. This is a vast difference when compared to London which recorded its highest level in over 50 years in 2013, with 26,230 new homes registered compared to 16,364 in the previous year.
The total number of new homes registered in the UK last year was 133,670, up from 104,514 in 2012. England saw new-build registrations rise to 117,969 - an increase of almost 30% - while Scotland saw a 20% increase with 10,052 new homes. Northern Ireland also recorded an increase in new homes, from 1,777 in 2012 to 2,072 in 2013.
The contrast between Wales and the rest of the UK (especially England) has been blamed on the lack of a Welsh Help to Buy scheme in 2013; the scheme only launched in Wales in January 2014 and has yet to impact on these figures. Nevertheless, government ministers and property experts believe housing figures in Wales will improve dramatically when the next report is published, thanks to the implementation of the new Help to Buy scheme.
The Minister for Housing and Regeneration, Carl Sargeant, has responded to this report and revealed that he aims to tackle the shortcomings in the Welsh property market by adding 10,000 new affordable homes with over 50% available to buyers through the new Help to Buy scheme.
Speaking at an Assembly Meeting in March, Carl Sargeant said:
“The £170m Help to Buy Wales initiative I launched at the start of the year is reaping rewards. The scheme will support the construction of 5,000 new homes across Wales over the next two years and builders are already saying that it has restored confidence in the construction industry. I am also setting a revised target of 10,000 new affordable homes during this term of Government”.
The new Help to Buy scheme in Wales was launched on January 2nd 2014 and aims to help up to 5,000 first-time buyers purchase their first house and take that first step onto the property ladder. The scheme will give buyers the chance to purchase a home with as a little as a 5% deposit, and they will also receive a loan from the Welsh Government of up to 20% of the property’s value which will be interest-free for 5 years if the value of the property is £300,000 or less.
Are you a current tenant in Cardiff or have you recently moved to Cardiff and are looking to take advantage of the Help to Buy scheme? If so you can contact CPS Homes today for advice and guidance on everything from discovering which forms you’ll need to fill out to finding the perfect property for you. You can come and see us in any of our Cardiff branches or drop us a message on Facebook, Twitter or Google+.