Publication - Statistics

Housing statistics quarterly update: September 2021

This publication contains an update on Affordable Housing Supply approvals, starts and completions up to June 2021 with all-sector and private sector new housebuilding starts and completions up to September 2020, and social sector new housebuilding up to December 2020.

Housing statistics quarterly update: September 2021
6. Social sector new housebuilding

6. Social sector new housebuilding

Note in this section that housing association new build approvals are used as a proxy for housing association new build starts due to data quality considerations, which is an approach consistent with that taken in previous publications.

Social sector housing consists of local authority and housing association housing, and has accounted for 28% of all new build homes completed over the 12 months to the end of September 2020.

Social sector figures are collected a quarter ahead of those for the private sector, meaning that figures are available up to the end of December 2020. However to enable easier understanding of how each sector contributes to the all sector totals described previously, some figures are also presented to end September 2020.

Chart 8a shows the number of local authority and housing association homes started and completed each year up to end September 2020, whilst Chart 8b shows the same information but up to end December 2020 (the most recent information available). Charts 9 and 10 show quarterly figures for housing associations and local authorities, respectively.

Between 2008 and 2009 (years to end September) the number of housing association completions increased from 3,800 to just over 5,700, after which the number of homes completed dropped in each year until reaching just over 2,500 in 2014. After fluctuating around this level for the three years after this, housing association completions increased to just over 3,900 in 2019, before decreasing to just over 3,300 in 2020 due to the introduction of measures to reduce the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) from mid-March to late June 2020.

The number of local authority homes built gradually increased from just 97 homes in 2008 up to just over 1,200 in 2012 (years to end September). Completions were then broadly flat until 2017 where they reached nearly 1,350 homes. Similar levels were seen in 2018, after which the number of local authority homes completed increased to nearly 1,500 before decreasing in the latest year to end September 2020 to 1,088 completions.

Chart 8a: Latest annual social sector starts and completions figures to end September 2020 show a drop compared to the previous year in the number of local authority starts and completions, and a drop in the number of housing association completions, but an increase in housing association approvals
Annual Housing Association and Local Authority new build starts and completions in the years to end June from 2008 to 2020
Chart 8b: Latest annual social sector starts and completions figures to end December 2020 show a drop compared to the previous year in the number of starts and completions for housing associations as well as local authorities
Annual Housing Association and Local Authority new build starts and completions in the years to end September from 2008 to 2020
Chart 9: Housing association new housebuilding approvals and completions in the latest quarter Oct-Dec 2020 have increased compared to Apr-Jun 2020 and Jul-Sept 2020 following the easing of lockdown restrictions in June 2020, but are lower than the levels seen in Oct-Dec 2019
Quarterly housing association new build approvals and completions from 2018 to 2020
Chart 10: Local authority new housebuilding starts and completions in the latest quarter Oct-Dec 2020 have increased compared to Apr-Jun 2020 and Jul-Sept 2020, following the easing of lockdown restrictions in June 2020, with completions also being higher than in Oct-Dec 2019, however with starts being lower than in Oct-Dec 2019
Quarterly local authority new build starts and completions from 2018 to 2020

Figures for the year to end September 2020

There were 971 social sector completions between July and September; a decrease of 25% (329 homes) on the same quarter in 2019. This brings the total for the year to end September 2020 to 4,402, a decrease of 18% (999 homes) on the 5,401 social sector completions in the previous year.

Meanwhile, 730 social sector homes were started between July and September 2020; a decrease of 44% (569 homes) on the same quarter in 2019. This brings the total for the year to end September 2020 to 6,949, which is a 1% increase (69 homes) on the 6,880 social sector starts in the previous year.

Table 4 – Social sector new housebuilding to end September 2020
Social sector homes Total Social starts Total Social completions Local authority starts Local authority completions Housing association approvals Housing association completions
Jul to Sep 2017 862 1,048 382 363 480 685
Jul to Sep 2018 826 1,344 358 326 468 1,018
Jul to Sep 2019 1,299 1,300 553 392 746 908
Jul to Sep 2020 730 971 246 424 484 547
Change -569 -329 -307 +32 -262 -361
Change (%) -44% -25% -56% +8% -35% -40%
Year to Sep-17 5,656 3,848 952 1,322 4,704 2,526
Year to Sep-18 6,496 4,970 1,682 1,384 4,814 3,586
Year to Sep-19 6,880 5,401 2,018 1,496 4,862 3,905
Year to Sep-20 6,949 4,402 1,438 1,088 5,511 3,314
Change +69 -999 -580 -408 +649 -591
Change (%) +1% -18% -29% -27% +13% -15%

Sub-national local authority figures for the year to end September 2020

Maps C and D show the rates of housing association and local authority new build completions in each local authority for the year to end September 2020 per 10,000 of the population (based on the latest mid-2020 population estimates). The housing stock of 6 local authorities (Argyll & Bute, Dumfries & Galloway, Glasgow, Inverclyde, Na h-Eileanan Siar and Scottish Borders) has been transferred to housing associations and so these areas do not build new local authority houses.

It should be noted that the rates of social sector new housebuilding activity recorded will have been impacted by the introduction measures to reduce the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) from mid-March to late June, which will have impacted on the year to end September totals and new housebuilding rates.

In the year to end September 2020 local authority new build rates were highest in East Ayrshire, Renfrewshire, East Lothian, Fife, Edinburgh and East Dunbartonshire. As well as the 6 stock transfer authorities mentioned above, Aberdeen City, Aberdeenshire, Angus, Clackmannanshire, Dundee City, East Renfrewshire, North Lanarkshire, Orkney Islands, Shetland Islands, South Ayrshire, Stirling and West Dunbartonshire built no new local authority homes in the year ending September 2020.

Meanwhile rates of housing association new build completions were highest in Na h-Eileanan Siar, Glasgow, North Ayrshire, Shetland Islands and Dumfries & Galloway whilst the lowest rates of housing association new build completions were in Clackmannanshire, Dundee City, Falkirk, Midlothian and South Ayrshire.

Map C: New build housing - Local Authority Sector completions: rates per 10,000 population, year to end September 2020
Local Authority new housebuilding completion rates, per 10,000 population in the year to end September 2020
Map D: New build housing - Housing Association Sector completions: rates per 10,000 population, year to end September 2020
Housing Association new housebuilding completion rates, per 10,000 population in the year to end September 2020

Latest figures to end December 2020

A total of 1,256 social sector homes were completed between October and December 2020, a decrease of 14% (213 homes) on the 1,469 completions in the same quarter in 2019. This brings the total completions for the 12 months to end December 2020 to 4,189, a decrease of 29% (1,720 homes) on the 5,909 social sector homes completed in the previous year.

Meanwhile, 841 social sector homes were started between October and December 2020. This is a decrease of 55% (1,012 homes) compared to the same quarter in the previous year. This brings the total for the 12 months to end December 2020 to 5,937, a decrease of 16% (1,129 homes) on the 7,066 social sector homes started in the same period in 2019.

Table 5 – Social sector new housebuilding to end December 2020
Social sector homes Total Social starts Total Social completions Local authority starts Local authority completions Housing association approvals Housing association completions
Oct to Dec-17 1,213 932 503 388 710 544
Oct to Dec-18 1,667 961 434 233 1,233 728
Oct to Dec-19 1,853 1,469 528 341 1,325 1,128
Oct to Dec-20 841 1,256 297 537 544 719
Change -1,012 -213 -231 +196 -781 -409
Change (%) -55% -14% -44% +57% -59% -36%
Year to Dec-17 5,845 3,880 1,291 1,393 4,554 2,487
Year to Dec-18 6,950 4,999 1,613 1,229 5,337 3,770
Year to Dec-19 7,066 5,909 2,112 1,604 4,954 4,305
Year to Dec-20 5,937 4,189 1,207 1,284 4,730 2,905
Change -1,129 -1,720 -905 -320 -224 -1,400
Change (%) -16% -29% -43% -20% -5% -33%

Contact

Email: housingstatistics@gov.scot