British Housebuilders: History and Analysis
April 2008, Wiley-Blackwell
The transition from the local housebuilders of the 1930s,
through the regional diversification of the 1960s, to the national
housebuilders of today is charted via a series of industry league
The rationale for the growth in national firms is analysed. The
conventional explanation of economies of scale is rejected:
instead, the stock market is found to play a key role both in
facilitating acquisitions and in demanding growth from its
The supply-side analysis also addresses the frequent corporate
failures: succession issues, lack of focus and the 1974 and 1990
recessions have played their part in equal measure.
British Housebuilders provides the first opportunity to review the evidence drawn from a century of speculative housebuilding; it is only with this historical perspective that sound judgements can be made on the corporate role in housebuilding.
Part 1: The Supply Side of the Housebuilding Industry.
2. Methodology, Sources and Definitions.
3. The Pre-War Housebuilder.
4. War and Building Controls.
5 The Post-War Housing Boom 1955-1973.
6. Recession and Recovery, 1973-1988.
7. Recession and Recovery Again, 1829-2000.
8. Market Share through the Century. A Summary.
Part II: The Private Housebuilder: a Rationale of Growth and Decline.
9. The Importance of the Entrepreneurial Function within the Speculative Housing Industry.
10. Who Were The Builders?.
11. The Rationale for Growth: The Economies That Accrue To Size.
12. The Decline of the Private Housebuilder: A Chronology.
13. Decline: An Overview.
14. An Alternative Explanation of Growth
- Analyses the relationship between housebuildng firms’ behaviour and the housing market cycle
- Provides the historical perspective currently absent from the literature
- High-profile author in housing writing in an accessible style
'Comprehensive in its scope and rigourous in its approach - an essential work or reference for any serious student of construction and housebuilding' - Building Research and Information