Construction output fell 2.0% in April 2021 following a particularly strong increase in March (5.8%), and output now stands slightly above its pre-pandemic February 2020 level.
Andy Sommerville, Director at Search Acumen, says: “Despite the drop in monthly construction output following a strong March, the construction sector remains one of the leading lights in the UK’s economic recovery.
“In spite of the drop off, we expect demand for residential properties to sustain and the longer-term outlook remains robust. Activity in the housing market is likely to remain elevated even after the Stamp Duty threshold tapers off after 30th June.
“This is due to the perfect storm caused by the pandemic. The ongoing working from home trend has meant that people no longer prioritise living close to their workplace and instead are favouring larger properties, with home offices and access to green spaces. More people are willing to move out of cities despite the longer commute, with many only commuting once or twice a week. This trend is likely to prolong activity in the housing market long into the coming months.
“Increased building remains high on the government’s agenda, and if housebuilders are to contribute towards its building targets, they will need access to tools to make accurate planning decisions. Investment in the digitisation of property information will help housebuilders identify risks upfront, making production decisions more seamless and efficient by enabling developers to better identify the risks and associated costs before a construction project has begun.”