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New housing supply increases for second consecutive year

Published: 8 Sep 2015 09:30
Part of:
Housing, Statistics

A National Statistics Publication for Scotland.

The number of new homes in Scotland rose by 6% in the latest year, from 16,110 in 2013-14 to 17,149 in 2014-15, the second consecutive annual increase and the highest figure since 2010-11.

This figure includes new build housing, conversions of existing buildings to housing use, and refurbishment of affordable housing dwellings. The annual increase has been driven by a rise in the number of private sector led new build completions (which rose by 1,221 or 11% on the previous year) and housing association new build completions (which increased by 5% from 2,911 to 3,064).

Despite the increases over the last two years, new housing supply remains well below pre-recession levels, and is 38% below the figure of 27,593 homes recorded in 2007/08.

Updated housing statistics have been released today by Scotland's Chief Statistician. These include information on new house building, public sector house sales, and local authority lettings and evictions, stock and vacancy rates, supported housing, housing lists, scheme of assistance and houses in multiple occupation.

Housing Supply (Private and Public Sector):

New housing supply: New housing supply (new build, refurbishment and conversions) increased by 6% between 2013-14 and 2014-15, from 16,110 to 17,149 units, mainly driven by an 11% rise in private led new build completions.
New house building: In 2014-15, 16,281 new homes were completed in Scotland, an increase of 9% on the 14,890 completions in the previous year, the highest number of completions since 2010-11. During the same time-period the number of homes started rose by 3% from, 15,577 to 16,028, the highest number of starts since 2008-09.
Affordable housing: (As previously reported on 2 June): In 2014-15, there were 7,069 units completed through all Affordable Housing Supply Programme (AHSP) activity - this figure is up 1% on the previous year.

Other key findings for the year to end March 2015 are:

Local authority housing stock: At 31st March 2015, there were 317,005 local authority dwellings in Scotland, a decrease of 567 (0.2%) homes from the previous year.
Sales of local authority dwellings: Sales of public authority dwellings (including local authorities with total stock transfers) rose by 20% in 2014-15, from 1,527 to 1,835. This is the second consecutive annual increase after years of declining numbers of sales. The increases are likely to be due to the announcement in 2013 that right to buy was to be ended for all tenants.
Right to Buy entitlement: Just over two-thirds (67% or 236,594) of tenancies provided by local authorities (or the relevant housing association following a stock transfer) had some Right to Buy entitlement on 31st March 2015, down from 76% the previous year.
Evictions: Eviction actions against local authority tenants resulted in 1,215 evictions or abandoned dwellings in 2014-15 (694 evictions, 521 abandoned dwellings). This is up by 32%, or 294 evictions or abandonments, on the 921 in 2013-14.
Housing Lists: Household applications held on local authority or common housing register lists decreased by 4% to 173,587 in March 2015, the seventh consecutive annual decrease.

The largest contributors to housing supply are new build homes. Information on these are collected quarterly with the latest private sector figures covering January to March 2015 and the latest social sector figures covering April to June 2015.

• In the private sector 2,924 homes were started between January and March 2015, 21% (780 homes) less than in the equivalent quarter in 2014. This brings the total for 2014-15 to 12,186, 4% more than in 2013-14. The number of homes started gives an indication of the number of future completions but various factors, including the type of property and size of site, can influence when these homes will be completed.
• Meanwhile 2,381 private sector homes were completed, 6% (149 homes) less than in the equivalent quarter in 2014. This brings the financial year total to 12,060, 11% up on 2013-14.
• In the social sector (local authorities and housing associations) 419 homes were started between April and June 2015 bringing the total for the year to end June 2015 to 3,709, 6% more than in the year to end June 2014.
• During the same period 424 social sector homes were completed bringing the total for the year to end June 2015 to 3,709, 7% less than in the year to end June 2014.

Figures on the Affordable Housing Supply Programme are also available on a quarterly basis.
• The latest information on affordable housing supply, for the year to end June 2015, shows that approvals are down 10% on the previous 12 months to 6,366. Completions are running at 6,678 for the year to end June 2015, down 3% on the previous 12 months. This includes an increase in affordable (mid-market) rent completions (up by 15% or 127 homes), as well as decreases for affordable home ownership (down by 3% or 55 homes) and social rent completions (down by 7% or 292 homes).

Following the announcement of the end of Right to Buy in July 2013 the number of applications and the number of sales both increased. The most recent figures available are for January to March 2015. During this period there were 1,007 Right to Buy applications (30% higher than in the same quarter the previous year, and 50% higher than in the same quarter in 2013) and 377 sales (11% lower than in the same quarter in the previous year, but 53% higher than in the same quarter in 2013).

The figures released today were produced by independent statistical staff free from any political interference, in accordance with professional standards set out in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

Notes to editors

The statistical bulletins and web tables associated with this publication can be found as follows:

Housing Statistics for Scotland 2015: Annual Key Trends Summary:
http://www.gov.scot/stats/bulletins/01173

Housing Statistics for Scotland Quarterly Update (published 8 September 2015):
http://www.gov.scot/stats/bulletins/01174

Associated web tables: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Statistics/Browse/Housing-Regeneration/HSfS

The statistical bulletins and web tables present information on new house building, public sector house sales, and local authority lettings and evictions, stock and vacancy rates, supported housing, housing lists, scheme of assistance and houses in multiple occupation.

These statistics are used for a variety of purposes including for monitoring the National Performance Framework Indicator on increasing the number of new homes in Scotland.

The new build, affordable housing supply, and sales web tables are updated each quarter. An explanatory document providing background information on these statistics is also available. The remaining statistics are updated each year, usually in August.

Official statistics are produced by professionally independent statistical staff – more information on the standards of official statistics in Scotland can be accessed at: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Statistics/About