Official figures show that between 2015-16 and 2016-17, the number of new house builds started, across the public and private sector, rose by 4% from 17,765 to 18,391, the fourth consecutive annual increase and the highest annual number of starts since 2008-9.
Meanwhile, the number of affordable homes in Scotland approved in the 12 months to the end of June 2017 increased by 30% on the previous year, bringing the total number of approvals over the year to 10,612. Approvals are essential before construction can begin.
Kenneth Gibson MSP said the figures showed good progress towards delivering the SNP Government’s ambitious target of delivering 50,000 affordable homes during the lifetime of this Parliament:
“Building more good quality, warm and affordable homes is a vital part of our drive to secure economic growth, strengthen communities and tackle inequalities.
“The SNP Government is committed to continuing to deliver more affordable housing per capita than the UK Government. We are offering significantly more grant funding for each unit of affordable housing, with each unit in Scotland supported by an average of £52,400 compared to just £25,300 in England.
“We’re also building social housing at a faster rate than any other part of the UK, with the total number of social sector homes started by the end of June 2017 increasing to 6,234, 32% more than the year to end 2016.
“Over the lifetime of this Parliament, we will invest more than £3,000 million to deliver 50,000 affordable homes. This is a massive investment backing up our target which is ambitious, challenging and absolutely necessary.
“By ending the Right to Buy we are protecting up to 15,500 social homes from sale over the next ten years while safeguarding this stock for future generations.
“We also have a range of support measures in place to support the private sector housing industry and stand ready to discuss solutions to help stimulate future growth and demand.”
Housing Statistics for Scotland 2016 Annual Key Trends Summary:
Housing Statistics for Scotland Quarterly Update:
Statistical news release: