The housing crisis in the West Midlands is worsening and a new report by the National Housing Federation has revealed the source of all this misery: nearly 45,000 too few new homes have been built over the last five years in the region.
In Birmingham alone, the five-year deficit of homes needed stands at 18,000. Last year alone, less than 12,500 homes were built in the region, which is far below what is required to accommodate the 19,000 new households that are formed each year.
As outlined in the Home Truths 2016/17 report, the housing market in the West Midlands is characterised by its diversity – from ambitious cities and their urban surroundings, to historic market towns and small rural communities. House prices vary widely, from £330,000 in Stratford-on-Avon to £112,000 in Stoke-on-Trent.
The report, which provides local data on the housing market in the West Midlands, reveals that many people are priced out of home ownership. While the average salary in the West Midlands is below the national average of £25,000, only those earning upwards of £45,000 a year can now afford the typical mortgage. The average home costs around £197,600, almost eight times the local typical salary, rising to nearly 11 times in areas such as the Malvern Hills and Wychavon.