Concern raised over sustainability of Scottish housing growth

Nicola Barclay

AN industry body has raised concerns over whether Scotland’s housing growth can be sustained after research revealed a sharp fall in the number of new homes securing planning permission in Q4 2018.

Homes for Scotland (HFS) highlighted the publication of its latest data insights bulletin which shows that, whilst housing completions increased by 15% last year, there is ‘no corresponding upward trend’ in planning permissions.

HFS chief executive Nicola Barclay said, “Having recently increased our capabilities in terms of data analysis, this is the first time we have been able to examine these key indicators on a calendar year basis, bringing them together in an easy to read format covering both national and regional levels.

“Although figures for housing completions are encouraging, there was a dramatic 44.5% drop in the number of homes receiving planning consent in the last quarter of 2018. This must serve as a warning that we cannot be complacent if housing growth is to be sustained.

“With new provisions in the planning bill signalling an end of tolerance in relation to below-par housing delivery, all stakeholders should seize this opportunity to move from conflict in the planning system to collaboration to ensure all our communities have the new homes they need for a successful future.”