Funding affordable housebuilding can create thousands of jobs for Londoners G15 study shows

  • 2 November 2020

A new report published today by the G15 group of London’s largest housing associations highlights the positive impact of increased grants for affordable housebuilding on jobs creation in the Capital and the overall economy.

The Homes Londoners Can Afford; Jobs They Can Be Proud Of report demonstrates that almost 50,000 jobs will be directly created by G15 housing associations under the current Affordable Homes Programme 2016-21, which sees around £960 million a year going into London and an estimated 21,474 homes built. However, this would reduce to 27,000 jobs under the proposed new Programme 2021-2026, which would see lower funding of £800 million a year and 11,800 homes built.

The report contrasts these figures to the potential 166,000 jobs a year that could be created if the Greater London Authority’s estimated funding requirement of £4.9 billion a year for building affordable homes in London was granted.

The report argues that immediate funding for affordable housebuilding in London would bring a major boost to the economy overall by creating new jobs and supporting existing ones, providing training opportunities and promoting the retention of essential workers in a sustainable way. And while the G15 has the ability to increase delivery of affordable homes in London, maintaining a strong development and construction workforce will be key to delivering new homes at the pace desired by the Government.

The key findings in the report are:

  • Just over two jobs (2.3) a year are created in the development and construction period of a typical G15 home (assumed to be eight years). This is equivalent to 2.3 job years per home.
  • 0.8 jobs are created per £100,000 of a G15 project’s total construction cost, excluding land.
  • A typical G15 development carries a minimum of 79 different job roles. These are both at entry points into the sector and sustained career progression ranging from apprenticeships to senior management level.
  • The total G15 pipeline of 64,475 homes creates 148,293 jobs. Of these 133,464 are skilled and 14,829 are unskilled jobs.
  • The Affordable Homes Programme outlined for 2021-2026 could potentially translate to 82,800 jobs directly created per year in England, or 414,000 jobs across the 5 years of the programme.

Vicky Savage, Chair of the G15 Development Directors Group and London Managing Director, L&Q said: “During these unprecedented times, investing in affordable homes will continue to give wide-ranging returns which go far beyond than just bricks and mortar. The construction and development sector will continue to be a major employer going forward and the G15 is ready to play a critical role in ensuring this.”

Helen Evans, Chair of the G15 and Chief Executive of Network Homes, commented: “The G15 has strongly welcomed the confirmation of the new Affordable Homes Programme for 2021/26 and supports the commitment to a broad range of affordable tenures. But we view the allocation to London itself will not be enough to meet the need for affordable housing in the Capital and new complex funding rules could limit bids.

“This report supports the evidence that backing London through new employment opportunities will be key to achieving this significant and viable programme of quality new homes. We look forward to engaging with the Government as further details of the funding programme are announced.”

View full report