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Time to build a relationship with a home builder?

by: Andy Gray
  • 06/11/2014
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Time to build a relationship with a home builder?
New homes are a key focus for the government - and should be for brokers too.

For such a high profile subject matter it appears that the housing market has been generating fewer headlines than normal in recent weeks.

And in the headlines that are appearing, ‘bubble’ seems to have been replaced with ‘cooling’ or ‘slowdown’.

Yet despite the slowing in house price inflation, it’s evident that demand for affordable housing remains strong, and the challenges in providing it as apparent as ever.

As such it was good to see Mortgage Solutions recently host its second British New Homes Senate in Hertfordshire where it gathered together key building firms, lenders and new-build specialist brokers to debate the future of the industry.

The key to moving forward is to get as many leading industry minds from a variety of sectors in the same room to help find some sensible and viable solutions.

Inevitably, decisions and initiatives made at government levels will continue to be the main driving force behind any new supply chains and new build developments but finding solutions to take any existing or new initiatives to market will certainly help continue propelling this sector forward.

As an example, the Help to Buy equity scheme has been instrumental in making greater numbers of affordable new-build homes accessible to borrowers.

Statistics in September suggested that it had had helped just under 30,000 households purchase a property since its launch.

Thankfully, when researching the broader new-build market, it becomes increasingly clear that councils all over the UK are throwing their backing behind a variety of affordable housing schemes.

Housing Minister Brandon Lewis recently announced new powers for local authorities which he said would help them deliver more affordable housing. The minister suggested that 22 councils around the country will be able to borrow an additional £122m over the next two years to deliver 1,700 affordable homes, while supporting local growth.

But there are lead generation opportunities for intermediaries too, providing they are open to the idea of aligning themselves with these types of developers or estate agent handling the sales element of the project.

All this means this is a sector in which intermediaries should be looking to build relationships and alliances to help maximise the growing number of available opportunities which will continue to present themselves.

Andy Gray is managing director of mortgages at Barclays

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