House building is not a political football

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The Local Government Association have announced that 475,000 home with planning permission were not completed in 2014-15 up from 381,390 in 2012-13. Yet developers still claim that planning permission is standing in the way of building new homes with John Stewart from the Home Builders Federation saying that speeding up planning permission is one of the keys to significant sustainable increases in house building.

On this one we believe in Counselor Peter Box, spokesman of the LGA:

These figures conclusively prove that the planning system is not a barrier to house building. In fact the opposite is true, councils are approving almost half a million more houses than are being built, and this gap is increasing.

Peter Box, spokesman for the LGA

He went on to say that the skills shortage is the biggest barrier to house building. In this local government working with private companies could provide inspiration and training for young people:

Skills is the greatest barrier to building, not planning. If we are to see the homes desperately needed across the country built and jobs and apprenticeships created, councils must be given a leading role to tackle our growing construction skills shortage, which the industry says is one of the greatest barriers to building.

Devolving careers advice, post-16 and adult skills budgets and powers to local areas would allow councils, schools, colleges and employers to work together to help unemployed residents and young people develop the vital skills to build.

Peter Box, spokesman for the LGA
Planning permission numbers granted in last five years table

There are still 1.71m people aged 16 and over who are out of work but are seeking and available to work. That’s a lot of people who can be re-skilled to remove that skills shortage. Construction is an industry where apprenticeships are a great opportunity for school leavers and the structurally unemployed to gain useful skills and build a career.

House buliding needs to be moved out of the political sphere. Increasing the amount of homes bulit in the UK is fundamental to the continued prosperity of the country. As populations increase we will need to build more homes, better use existing homes and allow the property market to become more fluid.

Will's Words:

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