New-builds account for just 13.7% of all properties sold in England and Wales, according to a new analysis of Land Registry figures by Fasthomes.org.
The research Fasthomes analysed a total 262,981 properties that were sold in 25 major cities in England and Wales in 2016. Fasthomes.org found that new-builds accounted for 36,179 of all properties sold, which means that only 13.7% of homebuyers decided to buy a brand-new home rather than “a home with character.”
Unsurprisingly, the largest number of both new and older homes were sold in London. Of a total 73,066 properties sold in the UK capital in 2016, new-builds accounted for 14,591 or 20% of all properties sold. The situation wasn’t much better in other analysed cities in England and Wales.
On the contrary, new-builds accounted for even less than 10% in as many as 11 cities analysed: Oxford (4.3%); Cardiff (5.9%); Ipswich (6.6%); Stoke-on-Trent (6.8%); Swansea (7%); Nottingham (8.2%); Birmingham (8.7%); Leeds (9.2%); Hull (9.3%); and Southampton (9.8%).
The most popular cities aside from London are Cambridge (21%), Newport (19.9%), Exeter (18.2%) and Newcastle upon Tyne (17%).
Adrian Smith from Fasthomes.org said, “Buying an existing property offers several advantages over a brand-new home. Firstly, there is the price factor as new-builds are on average more expensive. Secondly, old homes – especially those built before 1980 tend to be bigger than new-builds. And finally, there are simply not enough new homes.
“According to some estimates, the UK is short of some 100,000 homes a year when it comes to the ratio between the supply and demand of new-builds. Until the gap between the demand and supply of new homes closes, we can’t really expect any major changes in the housing market when it comes to new-builds vs. existing properties.”