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Derwentside Homes, in Stanley, County Durham, wants to build 400 homes
A NORTH-EAST housing organisation has revealed £40m plans to build 400 new homes after a national body urged for more properties to appease a buyer saturated market.
The move comes as the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) today reveals house price expectations increased to a seven-year high in November.
But it said demand was continuing to outstrip supply across the region, with 91 per cent of surveyors reporting new buyer enquiries, compared to just 25 per cent highlighting sales.
However, 39 per cent of surveyors across the North-East expect prices to rise next year and in the last three months to November, the report revealed the number of homes in the region sold per chartered surveyor increased to 17 from 14 in the same period last year.
Derwentside Homes, which owns and manages about 7,000 properties in County Durham, and employs 240 workers, said its £40m injection will help build new properties, including some built as affordable housing.
Bosses added its plans will help people struggling with the housing supply market to get on to the property ladder.
Keith Tallintire, Derwentside Homes' director of resources, said: “This deal is good news for the people of County Durham.
“We know that housing, both affordable and at private market rent, is in short supply and this investment will allow us to build much needed new homes to meet local demand.
“Despite the recent economic conditions, we are still very much focused on not only continuing to invest in our communities but also on expanding our stock by building much needed new homes.”
According to RICS' survey, national prices are now at a 14-year high, adding the average number of homes sold per chartered surveyor nationally last month was 20.6, a rise from 15.9 last year.
However, Richard Poole, a partner at Michael Poole Property Consultants, which have branches in Middlesbrough, Stockton and Redcar, urged caution.
He said: “While demand is clearly positive and rising, with the outlook for house prices at its best since December 2006, we should be cautious that the market doesn’t get overheated.
“There is still a huge imbalance between the number of people wanting to buy and the amount of new properties coming on to the market, which is having the effect of pushing prices up.”
Simon Rubinsohn, RICS' chief economist, also raised concerns over a lack of housing demand.
He said: “It’s no secret the housing market is on the way up and prices are surging ahead.
“Housebuilding is on the up, but it's rising nowhere near quickly enough to make up the shortfall.
“If there is not a meaningful increase in new homes, the likelihood is that prices and rents, will continue to push upwards.”
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