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Which political party has delivered the most housing in your region?

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New homes specialists, Stone Real Estate, has looked at who has delivered the most housing in each region of England during their time in government between the Labour and Conservative party based on historic house building records.

Stone Real Estate looked at the number of homes started and completed by the Labour Government between 2001 and 2010 and the Conservatives after then between 2010 and 2019 to see who has done the most to combat the housing crisis through the delivery of housing stock.

Homes Started

When it comes to the total number of homes started, the Labour party come out top during their nine year window, with a total of 1,354,897 homes started to the Conservatives 1,241,137.

They have seen more homes built across the North West, Yorkshire and the Humber, the East and West Midlands, the East of England and the South East, although the Conservatives did start more homes in the North East, London and the South West.

Homes Finished

But forget the number of homes started, how many have actually been delivered? 

In the last nine years, the Conservatives have completed 1,211,230 homes, however, in the nine years before that, Labour completed 10.4% more homes (1,337,270), with a whitewash across every region of the England.

The vast majority of homes delivered by Labour were to the private sector, a whopping 86.7% in fact, with the party outperforming in almost every region of England and the Conservatives only delivering more homes through private enterprise in London during their nine years.

However, in perhaps a reversal of roles, the Conservatives have delivered far more homes to the housing association and local authority sectors in the last nine years, with Labour beating them in just one region on housing association delivery over the nine years previous – London. 

Founder and CEO of Stone Real Estate, Michael Stone, commented:

“Regardless of your political allegiances, what is very clear is that the number of homes being delivered over almost the last decade has slowed compared to the same time period previous. This is despite a growing population and a greater need for housing and this lack of supply to meet demand is pushing up house prices and pushing homeownership even further out of reach for the average homebuyer.

Politics and property have always been intertwined but this isn’t a case of pitting one against the other and solving the housing crisis should be at the forefront of the Government agenda regardless of who holds the majority, with a long-term, sustainable plan to tackle it head-on so that the aspirations of homeownership don’t die for the next generation of buyers.”  

Property

Cost of maintaining a buy-to-let hits £12k a year in parts of the UK

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Leading property management platform, Howsy, has looked at the cost of maintaining a buy-to-let property each year and how this varies across the UK.  

Buy-to-let can be a tricky business if you don’t tackle it properly and there are a whole host of costs that can trip up the amateur investor. From the more obvious additional three percent stamp duty tax, to various other tax implications, void periods, mortgage costs, agency fees, the cost of finding a tenant, and more, Howsy’s previous research shows the average buy-to-let brings an annual return of just £2,000.

With the Government’s continued attack on UK landlords, making the most out of your investment financially can be tough and even when you consider all financial commitments for a property, many can still be caught unaware by out of the blue maintenance and repair costs. 

Buy-to-let landlords should squirrel away savings in anticipation of these events and an industry rule of thumb is an annual budget equivalent to 1% of your property’s value. 

So what does that equate to?  

Across the UK landlords should be tucking away an annual budget of £2,344 to cover repairs and maintenance, with this rising to £4,746 in London, with the North East home to the lowest repair costs at just £1,328. 

Of course, markets with higher rent returns may seem promising from an investment standpoint but the higher the reward, the higher the cost when things do go wrong. In Kensington and Chelsea, this annual 1% saving climbs to an eye-watering £12,292, hitting nearly £9,000 in both the Cities of London and Westminster.  

Outside of London, South Bucks and Elmbridge are home to the most expensive buy-to-let maintenance costs at £6,091 and £6,019 respectively.

Head to the likes of Burnley or Blaenau Gwent however, and this yearly maintenance budget drops to less than £1,000 a year.

Founder and CEO of Howsy, Calum Brannan, commented: 

“The buy-to-let sector can be a minefield for the amateur investor and now more than ever, it’s imperative that you do everything you can to maximise the return on your investment.

While technology now allows a greater level of control and service when managing your investment at a lower cost via online platforms, it isn’t just about the financial side of things. Providing a fit for purpose property is not only a legal requirement but essential to ensure a happy tenancy and a reduction in void periods.

Of course, things can go wrong and having the budget available to fix them is a must. In the worst-case scenarios, a cash pot equal to one percent of your property’s value might not be sufficient, but it should cover you for most eventualities and is a good benchmark to start on.

As with all buy-to-let investments, good preparation, organisation, and education are key, and whether you go it alone or have a great management agent if you stay on top of things, a bricks and mortar investment is still one of the best you can make.” 

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