The economic benefit of development to the local community

Some people call us greedy and some call us ruthless, but really developers helps communities grow which fuels economic growth. A lot of people fail to recognise how far the economic benefit stretches with the creation of new developments. Many people just assume that it is merely a percentage of housing that is allocated to the council for social housing, under the section 106 affordable housing act, but really it’s so much more than that. For many property developers it is very frustrating, as they are penalised for being greedy and bringing too much change into a community, but people do not see the bigger picture and the economic growth we create.

The house building industry is a massive driver of the UK economy and makes a huge
contribution to communities across the country. While delivering much needed new homes of all tenures, house builders are quietly creating and sustaining jobs, boosting investment in infrastructure and amenities in village, towns, and cities. As well as becoming ever more reliant on private builders to deliver affordable housing through planning agreements, vast sums are ploughed into new roads, schools and community facilities each year. Below we talk about the economic footprint provided in the UK of the property development industry.

1. Before a site has even been acquired, a company has many employees working in
house, depending how large the company is. As you can see already there are jobs
created and business rates paid even before the development takes place, this could be
anything from graduate to apprenticeship jobs helping the community grow.

2. Acquiring a development site is a key stage and the beginning of the property
development process, there are many systems in place to help to source a site, which is
normally done in house. Once this is found, each party has to have a legal
representative which they will outsource to a local law firm.

3. Development appraisal forms the backbone of the financial side of property
development and is arguable the most important step within the property development
process. A developer will know their appraisals inside and out and be able to quickly and efficiently put together an initial site appraisal and cash flow. This will be done in house, and is the deciding factor as to whether the site is worth purchasing, where many different considerations will be taken into account. This is the start of outsourcing the project to different expertise in the field. This could be a planning consultant, architect, solicitor, engineer. This changes from site to site, but there is always lots of jobs to go around in the local community.

4. A development cannot happen or go ahead without funding. Money is one of the 3
pillars of property development and is an area new and inexperienced developers struggle with the most. For each site that you look at, you need to understand how you
will fund it and how to structure the financial side. Each site is different and will require
a different set of funding criteria, and because it’s become increasingly difficult for
developers to get funding, they have to sometimes work with different funding
partners, this can lead to inefficiency and become very expensive.

5. One of the 3 pillars of property development is planning, and the required permissions to actually be able to start and finish a development project. As a property developer, we need to manage the process to ensure all the permissions are in place and that we have a scheme designed that is viable. A developer will know how to optimise and maximise every single square foot on a site to achieve the maximum amount of profit the sit can yield, which in fact means more affordable housing due to being a percentage measurement. There are many other permissions required, not just
planning. For example, building control and party walls. These all need to be managed
along the process to ensure that a development can actually go ahead and happen.

6. Reaching the construction step along the property development process is a major
milestone and there will have been some serious work, effort tune and money invested
into the project. There are many ways to contract with a builder, and this will also
depend on the role you are taking during the construction process.

7. Once the development is finished, it will then be sent off to different estate agents
around the area, but also the development company itself may choose to market the
properties. Sometimes they may hire private marketing companies around the area to
give it that extra push, or work with local newspapers and PR companies.

As you can see from the above, no matter what angle the development is going there is always a need for outsourcing jobs in certain expertise. What people do not understand is the idea of job creation for so many local businesses from development companies. It being a major boost for the local economy, providing modern and attractive spaces for businesses, creating new jobs and encouraging more visitor numbers into the town throughout the year. Below you can see some statistics put together from Litchfield’s of the economic footprint of developers around the UK.

• A total of £38 billion for the economy is generated by house building each year.

• A total of £4.2 billion is either given from developers to help provide affordable housing
in the local area.

• There are over 698,000 jobs created each year from a variety of fields of expertise.

• There is an around £2.7 billion in tax paid each year, which comes from a Council tax, Stamp Duty tax, Corporation tax, National Insurance, Pay As You Earn tax.

• A total of £5.9 billion spent in local shops and services by residents of new homes.

• A total of £1.2 billion is spent on tenants making their houses feel like home
i.e. furniture

 

 

New homes developers say higher interest rates and Brexit isn’t a threat for first-time buyers

This year has left much uncertainty in the housing market, with not only the interest rates being pushed up by the Bank of England but also the countries uncertainty around the Brexit ‘no deal’. In turn, this has led to mortgages rates sky high and UK wage development low, this is thought to of made it increasingly difficult for aspiring homeowners.

The increase in borrowing will have an immediate impact on households and is expected to dampen economic activity over the coming months. However, with scarcity at risk, there has been a high growth of first-time buyers, cashing in on the governments Help-to-Buy governments scheme. Estate agents across the UK, have not only seen a significant increase in new build homes being sold, compared to last year. But also housing asking prices across the market have also fallen by 2.3 pc this month according to Rightmove.

Mortgage approval rates for July showed another month of growth, which shows first-time buyers are still finding their way onto the property ladder. On the other hand, re-mortgage approvals fell by 7.3% July, showing that it’s becoming difficult to upgrade your home, rather than buy your first home.

Richard Carr chief executive of Fortitudo says this is a positive direction for the housing market for first-time buyers and Fortitudo will continue to help the housing market to grow, with our new build developments continuing to be associated with the Help-to-Buy Government schemes.

Richard Carr on how the ‘Brexit effect’ could be evening out house prices

There’s no denying that Brexit has been a divisive issue since the referendum vote of June 2016. And while we don’t formally leave the EU until March 2019, there have been various effects on the economy and, of course, property.

While the initial burst of doom and gloom predictions surrounding the economy didn’t come to fruition, there has been a surge of interest in property around the UK which has boosted regional areas. Continue reading

How will Brexit impact the commercial building market?

The uncertainty surrounding Brexit and the ongoing negotiations has led to questions over the future of every sector of business. And commercial property is no different.

Following the vote in June 2016, investment in commercial property did fall somewhat. Hotels, office space and retail properties took the biggest hit. However, there is still plenty of demand from tenants and, while initial numbers suggested tentative behavior, it could be a market correction, not a crash. Continue reading

UK’s Property Market experiences growth post-Brexit

Following eight months of steady progress the UK’s residential property market is picking up with prices and buyer demand rising, writes property developer Richard Carr.

Growth

richard-carr-discusses-new-planning-bill

Property market enjoying post Brexit growth

According to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), 8% of surveyors reported an increase in buyer enquires in September 2016, which is a significant turnaround based on June when a net balance of 34% of respondents report a drop.

Despite this small positive there’s still the major use around the supply of new homes. As a result, the number of new instructions being received by agents fell once again meaning the average level of stock on estate agents books remains close to historic lows at just over 45 properties.

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UK house building output continues to rise

Developers and the construction industry are continuing to do their upmost to lift the country from the housing crisis with the latest figures revealing that new house building increased in July, up 5.6% on the previous year.

Orders

Richard Carr Uk House Builders

Output is increasing

The amount of orders being placed for new homes increased by a massive 25% between the first and second quarter of 2016, which is the highest increase since 1967 when growth rose to 44.1%.

A major factor in the increase was the amount of new orders being received in the second quarter of the year for private new houses, which increased by 28.2% to a level of £3.5billion. That level is the highest second quarter for nine years when, back in 2007, it was £3.6billion.

Once again, the quarter on quarter increase highlights that the gloomy Brexit predictions are yet to be realised.

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London set to become home to the largest residential tower in the west

Plans have been announced that could see the London Docklands area become home to the tallest residential tower in Western Europe, writes property developer Richard Carr.

Investment

Richard Carr Spire London

Spire London

The project is being funded by a leading Chinese residential developer, which is another indicator that Britain will remain strong and get stronger following Brexit.

Greenland Group revealed plans for Spire London, which is expected to stand 67-storeys high and have a gross development value in excess of £800m.

The development, which will be located adjacent to Canary Wharf, will provide a staggering 861 apartments, with 765 of them being available for private sale.

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Asian Investors Express Interest in UK Property

Richard Carr comments on recent reports, which suggest that Asian investors are increasingly expressing interest in the British property market. Asian investor interest, these reports indicate, has climbed in the wake of Brexit.

Assessing Brexit

Before the referendum, many experts raised fears that Brexit would dampen UK real estate sector activity. However, recent research indicates that the number of residential properties advertised for sale in the UK rose following Brexit, while average British house prices decreased by 0.2% on average. Meanwhile, mortgage availability remains mostly unchanged after the vote.

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Strong Fundamentals to Support UK Property Growth

Previous research shows that despite Brexit, the UK’s housing market remained strong in June 2016. A new study from CBRE, a leading commercial property adviser, indicates that sturdy economic fundamentals will support British house price growth throughout 2016.

Encouraging price growth

Property Wire writes that CBRE sees current British house value growth of 5.1% as encouraging. The commercial property adviser added that UK residential property prices should expand by an average of 3% in 2016. In the second quarter of 2016, house price growth was strongest in the Outer Metropolitan area (12.4%) and London (9.9%), but weakest in the North (1%), year-on-year.

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