What is the Housing Delivery Test?

Let’s explore what the Housing Delivery Test actually doesdiscuss what it means for investors and developers and explain how Nimbus Maps can help you satisfy HDT requirements.  


How does the housing delivery test work?

The Housing Delivery Test is an annual measurement of housing delivery in relevant plan-making authorities. 

The Housing Delivery Test works by comparing the net homes delivered over the past three years to the homes required over the same period, with penalties for councils delivering less than 95 per cent of their requirement.  

The Government is instructing us to ‘BUILD, BUILD, BUILD’, setting a target to build 300,000 homes a year by 2025. To enable this, a HDT report is released annually, detailing councils that have failed to meet their target. The latest report (published on 19th January 2021) shows that more than 50 councils have failed to meet their targets and as a result, will have their planning powers restricted. 


What are the penalties?

The Housing Delivery Test engages the presumption in favour of sustainable development where insufficient homes have been built over the previous three-year period. It means that the presumption can be triggered even where there is more than a five-year housing land supply. This means the local plan in place is classed as outdated and so the local authority will become more vulnerable to housing development.  

If insufficient homes have been builtthe following rules apply:  

  • If a council has met less than 45% of the target over the previous three years, the presumption of sustainable development applies.  
  • If a proposal meets the NPPF requirements, then the council will not be able to reject it in most cases. 
  • If a council has met less than 85% of the target over the previous three years, a 20% buffer is added to the five-year land supply target in addition to the standard housing requirement. 
  • If a council has met less than 95% of the target over the previous three years, councils must publish an action plan to explain how they will increase the number of houses built.  

The good news for investors and developers

The HDT brings opportunity to developers and investors in the sense that: councils who have not met their housing delivery targets will no longer able to insist on implementing additional planning restrictions specific to that area and it’s likely that the NPPF (National Planning Policy Framework) will apply rather than specific additional restrictions. 


How can Nimbus Maps help you seize property opportunities?

If you’re interested in looking further into The Housing Delivery Test report, it is available on the UK government website, along with a rule book and technical note, click here to learn more.  

At Nimbus we know that if you’re an investor or developer, time is money. Our data engineers have done the hard work for you, by creating an HDT overlay!  

The HDT overlay works by displaying each council on a colour-coded map, identifying and highlighting areas that have not reached their housing delivery targets, making finding a viable site quicker and more straightforward than ever before.  

To see this new functionality in action, seize property opportunity and make site finding and connecting with owners easy, click here to book a personalised demo. 

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