Archived news

86% of industry believes government is not doing enough to enable development activity in the capital

86% of industry believes government is not doing enough to enable development activity in the capital

27 October 2017

Press release

In a damning indictment of government, 86% of the capital’s development industry believes that it is not doing enough to enable London development activity.

243 industry professionals took part in the inaugural London Development Barometer by M3 Consulting, a poll designed to provide a snapshot of industry sentiment from property specialists and decision makers involved in London development activities.

An overwhelming majority of respondents were of the opinion that the government, at both a London and national level, could be doing more. It comes at a time when political oversight of the property industry is under added scrutiny as the shadow of Brexit, austerity and the housing crisis looms at large over the capital.

There were concerns around the future health of the industry, with 57% of the opinion that there will be less development activity over the next five years. A mere 19% predicted a boost in development activity over the same period.

Some findings exposed a clear divide between government and industry priorities, with almost half of respondents signalling the improvement of the town planning process as a first or second ranking priority, whilst traditionally government-backed initiatives such as support for home ownership ranked as the lowest. Funding for local authorities, infrastructure, transport and housing authorities received widespread support, with 43% of respondents ranking it in their top two.

Respondents were also questioned on the capital’s most powerful industry figures, with two in three of the opinion that London Mayor, Sadiq Khan, will hold the most individual influence in the next five years.

In the residential market, build to rent will continue to make strides, the industry believes. Whilst 88%of respondents predicted an increase in the product’s market demand, residential sales garnered almost half that figure, with just 45% predicting an increase. 80% believe there will be a rise in demand for affordable and council housing, whilst 47% were positive about the outlook for student accommodation.

Gavin Kieran, Director at M3 Consulting, commented:

“The response suggests the industry’s pragmatic approach to the political and economic challenges and uncertainties over the coming years. Priorities are placed on planning, public investment and supply of land amongst others, measures which are within central and local governments control and ones that would help encourage the day to day business of development in London. Demand is likely to follow.

We will be interested in revisiting this set of results in a few months’ time, exploring how political and economic changes influence the market and the industry.”

London’s property development landscape has experienced significant change and uncertainty over the past year, with the historic national referendum on Britain’s EU membership and snap general election producing unexpected outcomes on both counts. The London Development Barometer aims to uncover the industry’s opinions on prominent factors affecting the property development industry.

In terms of industry breakdown of respondents, 60% were senior figures at their respective organisations and total respondents were split almost evenly between large companies (151+) and small companies (150-). There was an average of over 20 years of experience and representation from all major property submarkets, including residential sales, build to rent, offices, retail, student accommodation and hotels.



Notes to Editors:

For more information, please contact Four Communications:
Jamie Ley
Tel: +44 (0)20 3697 4362

About London Development Barometer

The London Development Barometer is an industry wide survey which helps track sentiment within the capital’s development sector. For each completed survey M3 Consulting donated £10 to LandAid, raising a total of £5,000. The donations will go towards LandAid House, a state-of-the-art building near Old Street, London to provide 146 bedrooms for young people at risk of becoming homeless.

About M3 Consulting

M3 Consulting is an independent, specialist development management business. Established in 1997, the business devises and delivers successful property strategies and developments that achieve best outcomes for all those involved and affected. Working with developers, investors, landowners and institutions, it has been involved in a number of prominent London projects, including The Leadenhall Building, Royal Mail’s site at Nine Elms, 20 Finsbury Circus and the new Postal Museum.

About LandAid

LandAid is the property industry's charity, working all year round to help make our vision of ending youth homelessness in the UK a reality. LandAid brings together businesses and individuals from across the industry to support charities delivering life-changing services for young people who are or have been homeless, or who are at risk of homelessness in the future.