Cala Group calls on government to tackle housing crisis by building more family homes

Kasmira Jefford
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Cala focuses on building family homes in the Midlands, the south east and Scotland (Source: Cala Homes)

Cala Group, has urged the government tackle the country's housing crisis by addressing the need for larger family homes, as the housebuilder forecast another year of record profits.

The Edinburgh-based group, which builds high-end homes in affluent areas in the south of England as well as Scotland, said the government's increased focus on affordable housing and first time buyers was "misguided" and that the most effective way to boost supply would be to support production across the entire market.

The company said research carried out for Cala by Nathaniel Lichfield & Partners showed a decline in the number of four bedroom homes across the country, despite growing demand from aspirational young buyers and pressure from an ageing population living in their homes for longer.

Chief executive, Alan Brown, said: “Although support for affordable housing and first time buyers is clearly important, the requirement for greater numbers of four and five bed family homes is arguably even more critical when it comes to addressing the real housing needs of growing families across the country."

“With this in mind, our focus remains on scaling up our divisions to increase the number of homes we build and, with the infrastructure in place to deliver an annual capacity of up to 2,500 units, we feel we are well placed to play our part in delivering the family homes that the UK desperately needs."

Brown's comments came as the company reported a 29 per cent jump in revenue per site per week rose to £255,000 in the eight months to 29 February compared with the same time last year.

Total net private reservations are 49 per cent ahead of last year while sales per site per week have increased to 0.50, from 0.37 last year, which Cala said was at the top end of its historic range. The company is now 83 per cent sold for 2016 and it has already kicked-off sales for 2017.

Brown, said: “Following a strong end to 2015, we have continued our positive trading performance into 2016 and remain on course to deliver another record year of revenues and profits for the group."

Cala was sold by Lloyds Banking Group to Legal & General and private equity firm Patron Capital in 2014. The company plans to reach £1bn of sales within the next five years by ramping up its annual housebuilding capacity to 2,500 homes.

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