Thursday, 4 May 2017

Baby Boom Causes Warrington Property Shortage

As more babies are being born to Warrington mothers, this increase will continue to add pressure to the over-stretched Warrington property market – and materially affect the local property market in the years to come.

On the back of eight years of ever incremental increasing birth rates, a significant 4.06 babies were born for every new home that was built in the Warrington area in 2016

I believe this has and will continue to exacerbate the Warrington housing shortage. This means demand for housing (be it to buy or rent) has remained high.  The high birth rate has meant Warrington rents and property prices have remained resilient and they will continue to remain high in the years to come – even with the challenges the economy has felt over the last eight years.

Increasing Birthing Rates

This ratio of births to new homes has reached one its highest levels since 1945.

Back in the early 1970s, the average was only one and a half births for every household built.

·   The latest figures show the Warrington area had an average of 62.7 births per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44
·   Interestingly, the national average is 61.7 births per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44.

The number of births from Warrington women between the ages of 20 to 29 is close to the national average, but those between 35 and 44 were slightly lower.  Overall, the birth rate is still increasing. When that fact is combined with the ever-increasing life expectancy in the Warrington area, the high levels of net migration into the area over the last 14 years and the higher predominance of single person households…

This can only mean one thing: a huge increase in the need for more housing in Warrington.

Demand VS Supply

More and more tenants are having children because they feel safe in rented accommodation.  Renting is becoming a choice for Warrington people.

The planners and politicians of our local authority, central Government and people as a whole need to recognise that with individuals living longer, people having more children... demand for property is simply outstripping supply. Whilst divorce rates have dropped recently, they are still at a relatively high level (meaning one household becomes two households).

The simple fact is: more Warrington properties need to be built.

Green Belt Land

Only 1.1% of the Country is built on by houses.  Now I am not suggesting we build tower blocks in the middle of the Cotswolds, but the obsession of not building on any green belt land should be carefully re-considered.

Yes, we need to build on brown field sites first, but there aren’t hundreds of acres of brown field sites in Warrington. What’s more, what brown field sites there are, building on them can only work with complementary public investment.  Many such sites are contaminated and aren’t financially viable to develop, so unless the Government put their hand in their pocket, they will never be built on.

I am not saying we should crudely go ‘hell for leather’ building on our Green Belt, but we need a new approach to enable some parts of the countryside to be regarded more positively by local authorities, politicians and communities and allow considered and empathetic development. 

Society in the UK needs to look at the green belts outside their leisure and visual appeal, and assess how they can help to shape the way we live in the most even-handed way. 

Interesting times!

If you would like more information about the Warrington property market, email me on or call on 01925 235338. If you are in the area, feel free to pop into the office – we are based on 6 Bankside, Crosfield St, WA1 1UPThere is plenty of free parking and the kettle is always on.

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