New housing starts rose by 1% to just over 40,000 in the second quarter of 2016/17, official government figures published today reveal.
The government’s new housing statistics show 40,070 starts in the three months to September and 39,250 completions. This marks a 1% and 5% rise respectively on the same period in 2016.
It shows overall supply of 166,100 starts and 154,220 completions in the year to September.
Starts are now 134% above the trough at the nadir of the recession in March 2009 but remain 18% below the pre-crash peak in March 2007.
The government’s quarterly housing statistics are understood to be a substantial underestimate of overall housing supply and are treated with caution by experts.
The overall annual figure for net additions is seen as more authoritative but is only published once annually, six months after the end of the financial year it covers.
The figures for 2016/17, published last month, showed overall supply at 217,350 with new build homes contributing 183,570.
The underestimate in the quarterly figures is understood to be mainly to be based on a lack of figures from homes registered with warranty providers other than the National House Building Council.
Today’s figures said housing associations started 5,460 new homes and completed 7,100 – figures which do not include some private homes built by the sector and many of those purchased through Section 106 agreements.
The National Housing Federation produces its own series of housing association supply statistics, which showed 9,592 starts by its members for the same period.