27/11/2019

'Concerning' Drop In New Homes In NI

The growth in the number of new homes in Northern Ireland has fallen back to levels seen four years ago.

New statistics from the Department for Communities show the number of new dwellings started over the July – September quarter was 1,922, a 14% decrease from the same quarter last year. Figures from April-June also show a 28% drop on the previous year.

A huge emphasis has been put on the impact of the underfunding of wastewater infrastructure, with housing unable to be developed in areas where sewage treatment works are at capacity.
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Responding to the news, Justin Cartwright, national director of CIH Northern Ireland, said: "This is concerning news – for some time we've seen steady growth in the number of new homes built each year, driven by the recovery of private sector development. Today's figures show a disappointing couple of quarters over the spring and summer, dropping back to a level of activity seen four years ago.

"Official estimates suggest Northern Ireland needs around 7,200 homes each year to keep up with things like population growth and demolition of older housing. This is a conservative figure, but one that we're now on course to miss this financial year which could impact on prices."

Mr Cartwright has also urged Northern Ireland's politicians to get the Executive back to ensure NI Water is adequately funded, which will boost wastewater infrastructure and housebuilding in the region.

(CM/JG)

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