Over a month has now passed since the 2015 General Election and we've all had time to reflect on the shock result of a slim Conservative majority victory.
We recently asked CRL newsletter subscribers what they thought the new look government would mean for the construction industry and housebuilding in the UK. The respondents to our poll included architects, developers, self builders, solicitors and lenders.
When asked if a majority Conservative government was good news for the construction industry over the next 5 years just 30% of respondents gave a yes vote, while 20% voted no. The remaining 50% of people polled were still unsure whether or not the Conservatives policies would provide a boost for the construction sector.
Prime Minister David Cameron had promised a commitment to infrastructure projects in the UK including the high speed rail project HS2 plus further investment in high speed railways in the North as part of the Northern Powerhouse project.
Another important issue in the run up to the election was housing. There is currently a lack of affordable housing available in the UK with many young people struggling to get on the housing ladder. During the last term in government with the coalition the Conservatives brought in a number of popular housing schemes such as Help To Buy and Right to Build.
Pre-Election promises included extending the Right to Buy policy so more council housing tenants have the chance to buy their own home, the construction of 200,000 starter homes, and a £1bn fund to help councils prepare brownfield sites for new home construction.
We asked our respondents what other measures would have the biggest impact on improving the housing shortage.
The most popular opinion with 50% of the vote was that officials should relax the planning rules on the Green Belt.
20% of respondents believed that selling off existing council housing stock and reinvesting the funds into building new homes would have the most positive impact.
A further 20% think that giving developers tax breaks to encourage more activity and new home starts would be the best way to get more homes built.
Our final poll question was on the effect of the promised Yes/No EU referendum vote on whether the UK should remain a member. This issue is one that has been debated for some time within the industry and is a concern for many construction firm bosses.
We asked respondents to our poll will the Conservative promised EU referendum vote have a negative effect on the construction industry?
50% of respondents believed that the uncertainty caused by the EU vote would cause instability and a negative effect on the growth of the construction sector. 20% of people polled said that the referendum would have no significant effect on the construction industry, while 30% were unsure whether the effect of the vote would be negative or positive.