81% of Brits snub new-builds despite housing crisis

Rozi Jones
21st August 2017
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81% of UK adults – the equivalent of 41.58 million people – are "unenthused" by the prospect of living in a new-build house, despite these constructions forming a core priority of the Government’s housing policy, according to data from bridging specialist MFS.

The data, which comes as a record 162,880 new homes have been built across the UK in the past year, shows that 79% of respondents feel the current Government should do more to embrace the refurbishment of traditional properties as a greater priority to boost the nation’s housing supply.

It comes as 1.4 million properties currently sit empty across the UK, a 20-year high.

60% feel that there are too many poorly-built, unattractive new-builds popping up across the country and 41% said new-build properties lack character, acting as eyesores within their localities.

A further 23% of UK adults would only consider buying a new-build as a buy-to-let investment, refusing to live in one themselves

Paresh Raja, CEO of MFS, commented: “Today’s research sends a strong message to both those involved in property development and the Government. Despite the distinct need for a greater national supply of housing, the public appetite is evidently stronger for refurbished traditional properties over new-builds. However, the UK’s current housing strategy is heavily predicated on new-builds, much to the frustration of buyers across the market.

"Clearly more needs to be done to support aspiring property buyers by doing more to encourage the refurbishment projects that are essential to satisfy widespread demand.”

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