New Homes England housebuilding statistics revealed

Housing programmes delivered by Homes England resulted in 37,330 new houses starting on-site and 34,995 houses completed between 1 April 2020 and 31 March 2021, despite the pressure placed on the housing industry by the Covid pandemic.

  • Proportion of affordable homes started and completed was down on the previous year

  • Reduction in both starts and completions a result of a slow-down in housebuilding activity caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Housing programmes delivered by Homes England saw an overall decrease in starts and completions in 2020-21 compared to the previous year, according to official statistics released today (22 June). This is as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Last year there were 37,330 new houses started on-site and 34,995 houses completed between 1 April 2020 and 31 March 2021. Three-quarters (76 percent) of starts were for affordable homes, representing 28,191 starts.

Of the housing completions, 24,023 (69%) were for affordable homes.

A total of 10,713 affordable homes started in 2020-21 were for Affordable Rent. There were 7,249 starts under schemes including Shared Ownership and Rent to Buy. There were 7,564 starts defined as ‘Affordable Tenure TBC’ homes, where the ultimate tenure category is not known until completion.

The remaining 2,665 were for Social Rent, an 11 percent increase on the previous 12 months, continuing an upward trend seen over the last two years and is a reflection of the funding being focussed on intermediate tenures in the early years of the 2016-21 programme with the grant funding opening up to Affordable Rent and Social Rent in subsequent years.

Of the affordable homes completed, 13,306 were for Affordable Rent and 8,811 under Intermediate Affordable Housing schemes. There were 1,906 Social Rent completions, up 29 percent on the previous year.

Peter Freeman, Chair of Homes England, said:

“The statistics released today show that we’ve kept making homes happen despite the huge impact of Covid-19 on the housing industry. Alongside this, throughout the pandemic we’ve also adapted as an agency, learnt more about our partners and found ways to support them; learning that will help us as we enter our next phase.

“We know there are still hurdles to overcome but we’re encouraged by recent data to suggest the sector is recovering well.

“With increased Government support through the new £12bn Affordable Homes Programme, we’re sure the foundations are in place for the housing sector to come back stronger to deliver the new homes the country needs.”


National housing statistics are published twice a year showing half and full year starts and completions as part of planned national statistical releases. The next release is half year starts and completions, which are due to be published in November/December 2021. Housing figures cannot be provided outside of these official releases.

Homes England programmes are funded by central government to enable private registered providers, house builders, community groups and local authorities to deliver affordable housing.

This release presents the housing starts on site and housing completions delivered by Homes England between 1 April 2020 and 31 March 2021 in England excluding London (for both the current and historical series), with the exception of the Build to Rent (BTR), Builders Finance Fund (now called The Home Building Fund – Short Term Fund) and Get Britain Building programmes which are administered by Homes England on behalf of the Greater London Authority (GLA).

Since April 2012, the Mayor of London has had oversight of strategic housing, regeneration and economic development in London.

The list of programmes included in these totals are detailed in the official housing statistics report, which can be found here.

“Affordable Tenure TBC” refers to units that have reached the start on site milestone but where the tenure of these units has not yet been specified. This was introduced as a flexibility for Strategic Partnerships to enable them to determine tenure close to or at the point of completion. These starts will be restated under their specified tenure headings in future national statistics updates once the tenure has been established at completion.

Homes England also manages the Help to Buy equity loan scheme in England (including in London on behalf of the GLA). However, the completions are reported by the Department for Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) and, therefore, are excluded from these statistics.

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