In response to a request from government, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has launched a market study into housebuilding in England, Scotland and Wales.
In its launch announcement, the CMA has confirmed the study will focus on four areas:
- housing quality: looking at how builders are delivering the right sorts of homes that communities and buyers need – including the fairness of estate management fees charged for ‘unadopted’ roads and amenities
- land management: examining whether the practice of ‘banking’ land before or after receiving planning permission is anti-competitive
- local authority oversight: exploring how councils oversee the delivery of homes and how developers negotiate affordable home requirements
- innovation: considering whether factors may be holding builders back from adopting new building techniques or moving towards more sustainable, net zero homes
The CMA has begun a short consultation on its Housebuilding Market Study Statement of Scope and is inviting responses from all interested parties by 20 March to inform the scope and provide source material to support the study. Full details are available on the Gov.uk website.
The Code welcomes the study as an opportunity to identify whether and to what extent there is consumer detriment in the housing market and what additional steps may be appropriate to tackle this. We will be submitting a response to the consultation in the next few weeks. Keep an eye on our news pages and social media for updates.