Construction sites to reopen today as builders seek to meet buyer demand

It may be a tough time for estate agents to get sales through to completion at the moment but there are efforts to at least getting Britain building again during lockdown.

Amina Gardens, Bradmore a new development of 29 homes. Reservations are now being taken.

Major building firms Persimmon and Taylor Wimpey have updated the stockmarket with their plans to get back to work on construction sites while keeping within Government social distancing guidelines.

Persimmon construction workers are back to work today (April 27th) as the house builder operates a “phased restart” to support home buyers who have already made a purchase.

The company said its cancellation rates have been at historic lows since it closed sites and shifted to remote working for office staff on March 25th.

Its sales teams have continued to serve new and existing customers with virtual viewings and a digital reservation processes, which has resulted in around 820 private sales reservations secured in the five weeks up to April 19th.

Taylor Wimpey is planning to reopen its sites on May 4th.

The company said cancellations have represented only 0.8% of the total order book and new sales have exceeded the number of cancellations, with more than 200 reservations of units during lockdown.

Meanwhile, brick makers Michelmersh and Ibstock have also started resuming production.

This activity has been backed by Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick.

He said: “Construction can and should continue so long as social distancing guidelines are followed to protect workers.”

It comes as Government data showed house builders completed more homes in England last year than at any point since the financial crisis.

The ONS figures show there were 178,790 new homes completed in 2019, beating the previous high of 176,640 that was set in 2007.

Ref: Marc Shoffman