The feel-good factor in the Welsh construction sector continues to grow into 2017 according to the latest Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Construction Market Survey.
And Jason Williams of Mallard Chartered Surveyors and Estate Agents has highlighted some of the reasons for the continued confidence in the Welsh market.
“It has been a massive advantage that development land values have dropped since the peak in 2007 to take into account an increase in building costs,” assessed Jason.
“It is now relatively more cost effective to build again in the Welsh housing market and that is evident with the amount of projects on stream across the country.
“It seems there is a lot of strength and confidence in the Welsh housing sector post-Brexit, and on top of that continued low interest rates are making it affordable for people to get mortgages and allow them to get on the housing ladder.”
The RICS survey show that construction workloads continued to rise in the final quarter of 2016, according to the balance of Welsh surveyors (+11%), and the significant majority of respondents (a net balance of +80%) expect workloads to increase further during the course of this year.
Infrastructure activity was identified as a key driver of growth in Q4 2016 (a net balance of +38%), while house-building workloads also continued to rise, according to surveyors (a net balance of +25%), albeit at a slightly reduced pace.
On the downside, labour shortages and rising costs continue to be evident in the sector in Wales: 73% of Welsh respondents reported shortages of quantity surveyors, with shortages also being identified in relation to other construction professionals, bricklayers and other workers.
But total input costs are rising, according to the balance of surveyors (+57%) and total output prices increased as well (a net balance of +57%).