At the centre of one of the largest urban areas in the UK, Newcastle-upon-Tyne is suffering the same problem as many of its peers – insufficient homes, and in particular a rate of building new homes which is far slower than is needed.
The National Housing Federation (NHF), a group which represents the UK’s housing associations, revealed in its ‘Home Truths 2015/16’ report that the North East is woefully short of homes – particularly affordable ones – “an acute housing crisis” exacerbated by shortfalls in new homes construction in previous years.
Its figures revealed that in Tyne and Wear, 9,000 fewer homes than were needed were built in the four years from 2011 to 2014, with Newcastle-upon-Tyne accounting for 3,000 of those and Gateshead another 900.
The NHF says in the report: “Fixing the housing crisis in the North East goes beyond increasing the supply of new homes. The region is in desperate need of regeneration.”
Part of the solution may already be on the table – the devolution of regional powers, such as has already been undertaken by Manchester. The North East and Tees Valley signed a deal with Chancellor George Osborne in October that will allow the region more autonomous control over matters such as housing.
The NHF’s Monica Burns responded to the deal by saying: “We want to make sure our region is truly part of the Northern Powerhouse with healthy, local housing markets which will drive productivity and public sector efficiency. It is promising that powers over strategic planning feature in these deals."”
Lord Porter, chairman of the Local Government Association, agrees: “To build desperately-needed homes, create jobs, provide the dignified care for our elderly and boost economic growth, all councils need greater freedom from central government to take decisions over vital services in their area. Devolving down to England’s big city regions will generate billions of pounds worth of economic growth.”
In Newcastle, the four key areas have been identified to provide more new homes quickly, to start to tackle the new homes shortage: Ouseburn Valley and East Quayside; Forth Yard/Calders; Elswick; and Science Central. Newcastle and Gateshead’s councils have joined forces to work on a combined housing strategy to take them up to 2018, the results of which will be key to determining whether the city’s housing shortage will begin to be overcome.
New homes for sale in Newcastle-upon-Tyne now or coming soon:
In Lemington, just five miles from the centre of the city and within easy reach of numerous local amenities, Keepmoat is building 33 new two-, three- and four-bedroom homes at Wylam Park. Priced from £172,796, buyers have a choice of terraced, semi-detached and detached homes, with Help to Buy available.
Just north of the Tyne in Benwell Grange, Barratt is offering a plethora of sizes and layouts at The Rise, where the first phase comprises 188 new homes. Prices start under £100,000 (much less up-front with Help to Buy) and the elevated position gives some of these contemporary properties a great river view.
In Blakelaw, Barratt will soon be bringing dozens of new homes to the Built for Life standard on the former Springfield School site, called City Edge. There will be a nearly 300 open-market and affordable houses with two to four bedrooms, alongside a 14-unit supported housing unit.
With properties currently ranging from £395,000 to £1.395m, one of the 48 homes at La Sagesse in Jesmond is certain to be one of the most sought-after addresses in the city. David Wilson Homes is refurbishing some homes and creating brand new others in bespoke designs to this premier residential neighbourhood.
Bellway has a large development with a great range of house types at Five Mile Park, in Wideopen, North Gosforth. Priced from £179,995, these three- and four-bedroom homes are under 20 minutes from the city centre. Two show homes are open seven days a week.
Just one two-bedroom home (priced £101,995) is left for sale at Gleeson Homes’ Caledonia Court in Hibernia Village, in the suburb of Walker. The ‘Cork’ is a former show home that comes with carpets, curtains and light fittings included and it’s under £82,000 up-front through the Help to Buy scheme.
Coming soon to Ponteland, not far from Newcastle’s city airport, Mill Rise is a collection of just 18 luxury apartments from Linden Homes which will come with a great specification, private balconies and lift access to all floors. Prices will be unveiled at launch early in 2016.