The number of homes being built at the start of 2017 in Britain is the highest in a decade, according to an industry body.

Some 42,470 new homes were registered in the first quarter of 2017, the strongest quarter since the third quarter of 2007, and a 17 per cent increase on the same period in 2016, according to the National House Building Council (NHBC).

Within the figure, there were 31,197 private sector registrations, up 10 per cent on the same period in 2016.

There were also 11,273 affordable sector registrations, a 40 per cent increase from the same quarter in 2016.

The NHBC’s registration 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.

In the 2016/17 financial year, 157,898 new homes were registered, marking a four per cent increase compared with the previous year, the NHBC said.

For the first time in seven years, all regions across the UK have experienced growth in registrations in the latest quarter, compared with the same period 12 months ago.

The strongest increases are being seen in the North East of England, which has seen a 39 per cent uplift, London with a 38 per cent jump and Eastern England with 31 per cent growth.

“These figures, with growth across the entire country, are clearly encouraging for the sector,” NHBC managing director Neil Jefferson said.

Mr Jefferson said there is an “air of positivity” within the industry, with mortgage lending figures and good rates of house sales adding to the upbeat outlook.


By Vicky Shaw