A scarcity of skilled construction workers is threatening to frustrate the Government’s house building hopes, a property expert has warned.
Robert Simonds, partner in the residential service charge department at CPBigwood, said developers were struggling to find the tradesmen to build the houses that already have planning consent.
He said: “It is a very serious situation especially given that, despite Government entreaties, we are nowhere near to meeting the demand for new homes.”
Construction industry body CITB has suggested firms are struggling to fill more than 62,000 jobs with a shortage of young talent entering the employment market.
A CITB study found that more than two-fifths of construction firms were finding it difficult to recruit workers with the right skills. Nearly one in five employers said that a skills gap had hampered their growth over the last two years, while over a tenth had lost out on work due to their competitors having a more skilled workforce.
CPBigwood looks after around 25,000 properties across the country and works with house builders to manage new developments.
Mr Simonds said: “With construction very hard hit following the financial crash, for many firms it has been a battle for survival, with jobs cut rather than created.
“This looks as if it is going to come home to roost now confidence is restored and the economy is moving forward.
“There needs to be a huge push to address both the skills shortage in construction and the requirement for new talent. The CITB has been warning of a ‘skills time bomb’ and this is not over-stating the position. The industry needs to develop a pro-active approach.”