The government must turn to house building as it seeks to battle back out of recession.
Boom of the builders
So much for chancellor George Osborne’s ‘march of the makers’ spearheading the UK economic recovery. Manufacturing has been in recession for three months more than the rest of the UK economy. So now the UK is officially back in recession, where will growth come from?
This may sound odd, given it shrank 3 per cent in the first three months of 2012, but a strong case can be made for construction. It bears repeating that for every £1 spent in construction, £2.84 is generated for the wider economy. There is a clear need for more homes to be built in the UK, so as civil servants crank back into planning for the spending review (expected in autumn 2013), housing has to present a powerful case. There are two key aspects: the economic value of billions spent annually on housing benefit and how landlords have leveraged this; and the political value of housing investment in allowing schools, hospitals and police to protect high-profile public services. Roll on the ‘boom of the builders’.