Number of residential construction jobs trebles in last six months
Number of residential construction jobs trebles in last six months as housebuilders respond to Help to Buy
Help to Buy and Funding for Lending schemes are opening up market for more buyers
The number of white collar construction roles being advertised in the residential sector has more than trebled in the past six months alone, as housebuilders prepare to meet a significant increase in demand for homes, according to Project Resource, the leading construction and engineering recruitment agency.
According to Project Resource, there are currently 715 jobs being advertised for construction professionals such as Quantity Surveyors, Design and Technical Managers, Project Managers and Site Managersin the housebuilding sector across the UK – up from an estimated 230 at the start of the year.
Project Resource says that this sharp jump is due in large part to the Government’s new & lsquo;Help to Buy’ scheme making it easier for first time buyers to get onto the housing ladder, together with the impact of the Funding for Lending scheme designed to encourage banks to lend more.
The Help to Buy scheme, which launched in April and is currently only available for new homes, means buyers only need a 5% deposit and can borrow up to 20% of the property’s value from the Government through an equity loan.
According to the Home Builders’ Federation, 4,000 new homes have been reserved under the scheme in the two months since it was launched, and housebuilder Bellway says the Help to Buy scheme has accounted for a quarter of all new homes in has sold since April. Glenigan, the construction market analysts, are forecasting at least a 10% rise in housing starts over 2013.
In their latest results, housebuilders Crest Nicholson and Persimmon reported that they had seen a big increase in turnover thanks to the Help to Buy and Funding for Lending schemes.
Dave Lewis, Manager at Project Resource, comments: “This is the biggest upturn in housebuilding since the height of the boom in 2006. Although this increase comes from quite a low base, as there were hardly any new vacancies this time last year, the signs are looking good for the residential construction sector.”
“The Help to Buy scheme in theory makes it easier for young people to buy their own homes but the reality is that sufficient supply of new homes is just not there. Housebuilders are now urgently recruiting to be able to meet this surge in demand.”
“While it’s really encouraging to see such a significant turnaround within just the last six months, the challenge for employers will be filling positions quickly from a pool of candidate that has shrunk over the years as the recession took hold.”
“Housebuilders are now starting to come out of the recessional mindset and they need to be ready to invest in good people if they are to reap the benefits of this upturn in the market.”
“We anticipate that the candidate pool will tighten in the months ahead, leading to an increase in salaries for white collar professionals in the housing market.”
DaveLewis adds that new Government policies relaxing new build planning rules are also contributing to the buoyancy of the new build housing market, together with the continued low cost of borrowing.
Figures from the Council of Mortgage Lenders showed that gross mortgage lending rose 5% in April.