Time for action

Olivier PidgeonResidential

News that the Government housing white paper has been further delayed by a month until some point in February will no doubt infuriate many housebuilders today. The residential development sector has been seeking market stability and reassurance after a particularly turbulent and uncertain year. From the stamp duty rate increases brought into effect last April followed by the June EU referendum result there have been significant knock on effects felt throughout the industry. (For example: rise in cost build materials, land and build shortages, consumer buying hesitation.)

The growing demand for housing in the UK is reaching critical levels, medium and large housebuilders can in some way ride the wave of uncertainty by dipping into reserves (land banks & purses) but for many other housebuilders these are worrying times. This week we saw more uncertainty over the exact method over triggering Article 50 which creates added apprehension about the actual process of leaving the European Union.

We appeal to leaders of both the Government and Housebuilders to draw on their leadership prowess to end any further market uneasiness. To Government, we ask that the release of the Housing white paper is done so at the new launch date, to act quickly and listen to the industry’s feedback, passing into law the changes required to address the speeding up of the delivery of homes and improving the land planning processes.

To housebuilders, we suggest that they steer a “constructive” path ahead for the next year, 2 years & 5 years to come and whilst absorbing all the information, data and projections that exist or waiting to be delivered, that there will never be a magic wand of answers from a government paper. By being constructive and forward thinking, it creates a momentum for the company that would spill over into the rest of the market and it can be from there that better legislation can then be passed.

Great business leaders will make changes when things aren’t going to plan, in spite of the difficulty it may create. If we imagine a nurse in a hospital triage bay, there isn’t an option to wait & see if a patient needs treatment, a plan is created there and then, it may be slightly cautious yes or ambitious but nonetheless, action is taken and we believe the same applies to the residential development sector. By only doing the minimum it compounds the insecurities that already exist.

ATS Consultants know what makes a strong business leader and senior management team & after more than 30 years in industry we’re the right people to assist you for your next assignment. Contact us today on business@ats-consultants.com or give us a call on 0208 528 1768.


Olivier Pidgeon, Marketing & Business Development Manager