Modular Buildings Could Ease The UK Housing Crisis

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The government has pledged to build 1 million homes in this Parliament, despite backpedalling on its new homes target in December 2022. The Property Industry Eye reports that Prime Minister Rishi Sunak made the pledge during a speech by the Housing and Levelling Up Secretary, Michael Gove.

The government faced criticism last year when it altered its plan to build 300,000 a year in England from mandatory to advisory, effectively scrapping targets for new homes despite the fact that demand far outstrips supply. In a move to reassert its commitment to housebuilding, Gove announced a series of new measures.

These include reforming planning laws to make it easier for empty retail units and takeaways into homes, and cutting back on red tape around extensions, renovations, loft conversions and barn conversions. This would help to make better use of existing buildings rather than cutting into greenbelt land.

Gove said: “Most people agree that we need to build more homes – the question is how we go about it. Rather than concreting over the countryside, we have set out a plan today to build the right homes in the right places where there is community support – and we’re putting the resources behind it to help make this vision a reality.

“At the heart of this is making sure that we build beautiful and empower communities to have a say in the development in their area.”

However, some commentators say that these plans do not go far enough to address the urgent need to build more homes in the UK. A 2019 report by the Housing, Communities and Local Government Select Committee of MPs recommended that the government make better use of modern methods of construction (MMC) to help create additional housing stock.

MMC refers to buildings that can largely be manufactured off-site, and installed on site in less than half the time that it takes for a traditional bricks and mortar build. This is also a far more sustainable and energy efficient approach to construction, with much less embodied carbon emissions and greater use of renewable materials.

MMC for housing has been widely adopted in other developed countries such as Japan and the US, where there is a similar level of demand to deliver cost-effective, sustainable and energy efficient housing in shorter timeframes.

Unlike the prefabricated homes of the post-war era, modern modular buildings are constructed to the highest standards of quality and with custom made materials. They are highly durable and suitable for permanent housing solutions.

Currently, most UK housebuilders still use traditional methods of construction, but as the demand for affordable energy efficient housing continues to grow, it could only be a matter of time before MMC will become much more commonly deployed.

If you would like some information on premium modular buildings, please get in touch with us today.

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