New Build Housing - All sectors
The new-build section of this document provides figures on the number of homes started (when the foundations are begun) and completed (when a building inspector deems the property complete).
Figures are presented for homes built on privately led (referred to throughout as private sector), local authority led (referred to as local authority sector) and housing association led (referred to as housing association sector) sites. For the private sector the latest information available is for the quarter ending March 2017. Whilst more up-to-date information is available for local authority and housing association new builds, findings for these sectors are mainly presented up to March 2017 to simplify comparisons between sectors.
The figures have not been seasonally adjusted and so commentary tends to compare the latest quarter with the same quarter the previous year. To help with this, Quarter 1 figures (from January to March) have been highlighted in the charts to allow easy comparison over time. Some of the peaks in the number of starts in Quarter 1 each year are due to large numbers of housing association approvals being granted near the end of the financial year.
Previous versions of this publication included estimated figures on private led new build completions for the City of Edinburgh for 2015 Quarter 4 onwards, due to some concerns around the quality of the data derived from new build completion certificates. These estimates for Edinburgh were based on separate private new build house sales data from Registers of Scotland, with further assumptions on self-builds and private sector led section 75 completions which are not captured within this data source. Since then, an investigation into the data quality issues has been carried out and the issues have been resolved, with corrected building completion certificate based figures on private-led starts and completions being supplied by City of Edinburgh Council from 2015 Quarter 1 onwards. These figures have now been incorporated into the publication time series tables, and so the new build figures for City of Edinburgh presented in this statistical bulletin are now based on actual building completion certificates data rather than estimates.
Chart 1 ( see above) shows the number of private sector, social sector and total new homes completed each quarter since 2005, whilst Charts 2 and 3 (below) show annual and quarterly trends, respectively, in starts and completions across all sectors.
Chart 2: Annual all sector new build starts and completions, years to end March, 2007 to 2017
Chart 3: Quarterly new build starts and completions (all sectors) since 2006
Trends over the last ten years
Charts 1 to 3 all clearly show the impact of the recession in the second half of the last decade, with private sector led completions in particular falling throughout 2008 and 2009 (years to end March). Completions for all sectors fell more gradually between 2010 and 2013, before increasing until 2017.
Trends to end March 2017
There were 4,279 new build homes completed between January and March 2017; a 3% increase on the same quarter in 2016. This brings the total for the year to end March 2017 to 17,078, up 1% (251 homes) compared to the 16,827 completed in the previous year.
There were 5,781 new build homes started between January and March 2017; 20% more than the same quarter in 2016. This brings the total for the year to end March 2017 to 18,391 which is up by 4% (626 homes) compared to the 17,765 homes started in the previous year.
Comparison with the rest of the UK from 2007 to 2017
Each of the countries of the UK produces their own statistics on new build housing and all use broadly consistent definitions. New build statistics for each of the countries of the UK, as well as for Great Britain and the UK as a whole can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/live-tables-on-house-building.
As Chart 4 shows, the rate of house building completions in Scotland has been above that of England and Wales throughout the 2007 to 2017 period (years to end March). The rate of house building completions in Scotland has been below that of Northern Ireland between 2007 and 2017 except for the years 2015 and 2016.
The 17,078 homes completed in Scotland in the year to end March 2017 equates to a rate of 32 per 10,000 population. This is the lower than Northern Ireland (35), but higher than the equivalent rates in England (27) and Wales (18).
Chart 4: New house building as a rate per 10,000 population for UK countries, years to end March, 2007 to 2017
Sub-national figures for the year to end March 2017
The information on new build housing in Scotland is collected and published at local authority level. Map A, below, shows new house building in the year to end March 2017, as a rate per 10,000 population.
In the year to end March 2017 the highest new build rates were observed in Midlothian, East Lothian, Orkney Islands, Renfrewshire and East Dunbartonshire. The lowest rates were observed in Angus, Inverclyde, West Dunbartonshire, North Lanarkshire, and North Ayrshire.
Map A - New build housing - all sector completions: rates per 10,000 population, year to end March 2017
Email: Esther Laird, firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: 0300 244 4000 – Central Enquiry Unit
The Scottish Government
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