A Director of one of Britain’s biggest housebuilders has pledged to sleep rough for a night in November in a bid to draw attention to Britain’s housing shortage – a problem which experts predict could leave over 20,000 homeless by 2015.
Sue Warwick, National Head of Sales and Marketing for Miller Homes, made the decision to experience a night sleeping in London’s Exchange Square following a series of reports which showed that Britain was on the brink of the worst housing shortage since World War II. This bleak picture is thanks to a combination of economic and regulatory issues that has seen the lowest number of new home completions since the early 1920′s, accompanied by an ongoing unease surrounding NHBC ‘new start’ registrations.
One of the more recent reports on the subject from the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) stated that Britain needs 750,000 new homes by 2025 in order to house the growing population – but a range of factors including poor mortgage supply, lack of planning policy and faltering consumer confidence have stalled building programmes with all housebuilders – a problem which will begin to kick-in in earnest within the next three years.
According to Miller Homes, the housing shortage is just the tip of the iceberg – and the vast majority of Britons will feel the effects of the problem before the start of the next decade. The warnings follow a recent statement from the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) which predicted that the housing shortage will have a dramatic impact on house prices, which are likely to reach an all-time high by 2015.
Sue commented: “We are in a position where we have more households than houses. This is a dreadful situation, and one that could have been avoided as we now stare down the barrel at a dreadful housing shortage.”
Miller Homes’ involvement in the sleep out fundraiser also comes within weeks of Planning Minister; Greg Clarke’s defence of the Coalition’s planning policies, which propose simplification of English planning law. 60,000 new homes are required per quarter to meet the current shortfall in demand and Miller Homes remains a fierce advocate of ensuring new buyers can get onto the property ladder.
Sue continued: “We strongly believe that everybody deserves to have a place they can call home and the government needs to ensure that future generations are able to afford what is wrongly now seen as a privilege rather than a right.
“We regularly express our concerns that house prices are prohibiting an increasing number of people from home ownership, but rarely do we consider the property supply itself. We must get to grips with the demand for housing before it is too late.”
Sue Warwick, national sales and marketing director for Miller Homes will be sleeping out in London’s Exchange Square in the heart of the city on 10 November as part of an event hosted by Centrepoint – the leading charity for homeless young people. Centrepoint gives homeless young people a future by providing housing and support. The young people it supports find it increasingly difficult to find a home of their own due to the lack of affordable housing.
Miller Homes is now urging as many people as possible to support Sue’s fundraiser by making a donation on her JustGiving page. For more information on Sue Warwick’s charity sleep out visit www.millerhomes.co.uk or to sponsor Sue, visit www.justgiving.com/Sue-Warwick.