Builders merchants organisation the Builders Merchants Federation (BMF) has welcomed the Chancellor’s Budget for “makers, doers and savers” as broadly positive for the building supply industry.
BMF MD, John Newcomb, said: “We are pleased to see the support for home building. In addition to extending the Help to Buy equity loan scheme, a £500m loan fund for SME builders will help unblock 15,000 plots stalled due to difficulty in obtaining finance.
“A further £150m of new money as repayable loans will support those wanting to build their own home, which is again good news for merchants and their customers.
“In total, the government is projecting the building of 200,000 new homes and by invigorating the market with such schemes, ministers recognise that construction is a primary driver of home-grown economic activity, and more has to be done to meet demand.”
Newcomb added: “It was interesting to see the Chancellor promoting a new garden city at Ebbsfleet. The BMF has been working on garden cities with Lord Wolfson, the founder of the Wolfson Economics Prize. This year’s competition focuses on delivering a new garden city and Lord Wolfson will be the principal speaker at this year’s BMF Members’ Day in September.”
However, the BMF expressed its disappointment that Chancellor George Osbourne had not included any incentives to stimulate demand for energy efficient home improvement and RMI work.
“While the support for new homes is very welcome, little has been done to support RMI and in particular, stimulate energy efficient upgrades in our existing housing stock. Aside from the capping of the Carbon Floor Price to assist energy-intensive industries including ceramics and glassmaking, the Chancellor did little in this Budget to drive a low carbon Britain,” concluded Newcomb.