Latest figures show social housing sector is in a strong financial position

There has been an increase in the number of homes for sale being developed by the social housing sector which is in a strong financial position, according to the latest quarterly survey.

Over the 2018/2019 financial year, the sector raised new facilities worth £13.5 billion, the highest amount raised in a single year, the figures from the Regulator of Social Housing shows.

The 6,367 of homes developed for sale which were completed in the quarter, include 4,817 affordable homes and 1,550 properties for market sale.

The increase in the number of unsold properties to 6,924 affordable home ownership homes and 1,933 market sake homes, primarily reflects this peak in development, the report says.

The sector remains financially strong with access to £20.8 billion in undrawn facilities available at the end of March and total sales receipts in the quarter amounted to £1.5 billion, the second highest amount achieved in the last three years, only slightly lower than the figure reported in the quarter to March 2018.

Over the next 12 months expected investment in new housing supply is forecast to be £14.9 billion, of which £10.5 billion is contractually committed. In the 12 months to March 2019 total investment in new supply was £11.8 billion.

Plans for committed and uncommitted development of for-sale properties is set to increase in the next 18 months to include the completion of 31,901 affordable homes and 13,783 market sale properties.

‘The latest quarterly survey results indicate that the sector continues to be in a robust position to respond to any uncertainty and changes in the wider economic environment. In 2018/2019 the sector raised an unprecedented amount of new private finance from banks and the capital markets in order to support plans for increased capital investment,’ said Fiona MacGregor, Chief Executive, regulator of Social Housing.

‘The past quarter showed a further increase in the level of new development for sale, both of shared ownership and outright market sale properties, and forecasts anticipate a further increase over the next 18 months. It is important that providers in these markets carefully manage their development risks and are prepared to respond to any changes in the housing market in a timely fashion,’ she added.