Fewer new homes built in North East due to extreme weather and political uncertainty

The number of new homes being built has fallen in the UK.
The number of new homes being built has fallen in the UK.

The number of new-build homes being registered in the UK fell in 2018, industry figures show.

Across the UK, developers registered 159,617 new homes with the National House Building Council (NHBC) over the year, a 0.5 per cent decrease compared with 2017, the NHBC said.

In the North East, 6,379 new homes were registered - 3 per cent down on 2017, but still better than five other regions.

The NHBC's figures are taken from builders who are responsible for around 80 per cent of homes constructed in the UK.

Builders are required to register a house with the NHBC, a warranty and insurance provider, before starting work, which means its figures represent homes to be built in the months ahead.

The NHBC said home registrations in the private sector were down by 1 per cent in 2018 compared with 2017, while those in the affordable sector remained broadly similar to the previous year.

Nearly a third (31 per cent) of new-build registrations in 2018 were for detached homes, 27 per cent were for semi-detached homes, 25 per cent were for apartments, 15 per cent were for terraced homes and 2 per cent were for bungalows.

The number of new homes which were completed last year was up, however, compared with 2017.

There were 149,480 completions - a 1 per cent increase on 2017.

The number of new homes being registered also picked up towards the end of 2018, the NHBC said.

Half of 12 UK nations and regions saw new-build registrations hold steady or increase last year compared with 2017, while the other half saw a fall.

The strongest increases were in Northern Ireland, at 39 per cent, and Yorkshire and Humberside, where registrations saw a 20 per cent uplift.

Meanwhile, registrations fell by 10 per cent in London and the Midlands year-on-year.

In Wales, there was no change and in Scotland there was a 5 per cent fall.

NHBC chief executive Steve Wood said: "The full-year figures of nearly 160,000 new home registrations demonstrate the resilience of the UK house building industry.

"2018 has been a demanding year, with the extreme weather conditions in the early part and the continuing political and economic uncertainties, which are extending into 2019.

"Whatever the environment, NHBC will continue to support house builders to deliver the high-quality, new homes that the country needs."

A spokesman for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government said: "For the last 30 years, governments of all stripes and types have failed to build enough homes, but we're turning that ship around.

"We still need to deliver more, better, faster, but more than 222,000 homes were delivered in 2017-18, the highest level in all but one of the last 31 years."

Here are the number of new-build home registrations across the UK in 2018 and the percentage change compared with 2017, according to the NHBC's figures:

- North East, 6,379, -3%

- North West and Merseyside, 18,079, 7%

- Yorkshire and Humberside, 11,196, 20%

- West Midlands, 13,447, -10%

- East Midlands, 13,087, -10%

- Eastern England, 17,707, 2%

- South West, 14,315, -5%

- London, 16,069, -10%

- South East, 26,871, 3%

- Scotland, 12,096, -5%

- Wales, 5,463, 0%

- Northern Ireland and Isle of Man, 4,908, 39%.