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News Release

London

JLL's reaction to 2015 Stability Budget


​JLL's experts give their reaction to the Stability Budget.

Apprenticeships and productivity

Guy Grainger, UK Chief Executive at JLL commented: "The announcement made by George Osborne today regarding the delivery of 3 million new apprenticeships is one of the most important points put forward in this budget when addressing further stability and economic growth for the UK. The whole country - and particularly London - is suffering from a chronic shortage of skilled construction workers. This is driving up construction costs and affecting the viability of much-needed housing and commercial developments.

"Providing a plentiful supply of skilled construction workers would help ease the pressure on costs while improving productivity in the industry and providing a further boost to employment."

 

Housing

Adam Challis, Head of Residential Research at JLL commented: "Affordability remains one of the biggest risks to Government and the only long-term solution is to expand the rate of housing delivery. To achieve this, investment in construction apprenticeships will be vital as this workforce will see a higher rate of retirement in the future. There is also a need to modernise construction, with a greater proportion of construction taking place in off-site factories where a higher quality, more sustainable product can be delivered.

"This Government has placed a real emphasis on home ownership, but housing need spans the full spectrum of social and private rented tenures as well. Delivery of affordable housing will improve labour mobility and protect the economy.

"The loss of some Buy to Let interest relief will curb the expansion of investment in the sector. Although this will be seen as a boost for first-time buyers, it is only likely to weaken demand, particularly for new-build product. This investor activity is vital to underpin construction finance and will run counter to the need for higher rates of new supply.

"The new higher rate of inheritance tax relief will provide retirees with greater choice on how to manage the transfer of wealth to younger generations. Sensibly, this relief will be upheld for downsizers, ensuring that it does not slow the release of larger family homes into the market.

"A reduced social rent trajectory will be damaging for Registered Providers and their ability to build new affordable homes. This will impose a larger requirement for RPs to engage in capital markets and to build new homes in the private market that will cross-subsidise affordable housing needs. Ultimately, the social housing sector will be worse off as a result."

 

Retail

Commenting on the announcement that Sunday trading laws will be relaxed, Damian Sumner, Head of Retail Agency at JLL said: "This is a welcome announcement from the Chancellor. With people able to shop online 24/7, the physical retail world needs to be able to compete. Time is the most vital commodity that people have and more flexibility is required to enable people to fit shopping into their busy lives. At a time of rising consumer confidence more shopping time can only be good news for retailers and consumers alike. The Chancellor now needs to tackle the stranglehold that an outdated business rates system is having on retailers."