The registration of new homes in the UK is a major indicator of the health of the housing sector. The year began on a positive note for the new home-building industry with the number of new homes registered to be built increasing by 3 per cent over the corresponding period in 2018.

According to data released by National House-Building Council (NHBC), the number of new homes registered by the UK’s house-builders and developers in the first three months of the year reached more than 37,672 compared to 36,508 between Jan-March 2018.

Of the 37,000+ new homes registered to be built, the affordable and rental sectors saw the highest increase. The affordable and rental sector homes went up by a whopping 36 per cent (10,831 as against 7,954 in 2018). The rise in the affordable and rental registration numbers reflects the continued growth in the Private Rental Sector in many UK towns and cities.

The private sector continued to occupy a major share - 26,841 new homes registered to be built. NHBC is the leading warranty and insurance provider for new homes in the UK and its registration statistics are a lead indicator for the new homes market.

At a regional level, London saw a 58 per cent increase compared to Jan-March 2018 (5,625; 3,549 in 2018), boosted by a number of large schemes being registered at the start of this year.

“Although Brexit uncertainties are impacting consumer confidence and causing some dampening of new-build and second-hand sale markets, housing remains an attractive asset class for inward investors, which does cause us to be more optimistic about Build to rent,” NHBC said in its monthly report.