Responding to today’s Budget (22.11.2017), the Builders Merchants Federation (BMF) has welcomed recognition by the Chancellor that housebuilding needs to be one of the Government’s main priorities.
John Newcomb, Chief Executive of the BMF said: “The BMF is pleased that the Chancellor acknowledges the profound need to deliver and build new homes. This needs to be an unflinching, unrelenting determination by government at all levels to narrow the gap between housing demand and supply. We also want to see the Government press ahead with its proposals contained in the Housing White Paper, as this will bring a welcome boost to housebuilders.
“Access to finance, available land, more SME builders, sclerotic planning approval, slow build-out rates, over-stretched local authorities, brownfield versus greenfield, and residents’ resistance, must all be confronted and resolved. However, we welcome the new money that has been found for the Home Building Fund, for small sites, and for construction skills. In addition, we are pleased to see the lifting of the cap on Housing Revenue Accounts for Local Authorities and the immediate scrappage of stamp duty for many first-time buyers.
“It is clear that we need to build many more homes, but these cannot be built without the materials and products that BMF members make, stock and deliver, on a daily basis, to where they are needed. The BMF reminds Mrs May, Mr Hammond and the Conservatives that it is the customers of builders, plumbers and timber merchants that build new housing and improve existing homes, not government ministers.
“However, our members are ready to take on the challenge and provide the supplies and materials needed to make this happen, if they receive the necessary support from government by considering all parts of the supply chain in building new homes”.