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House-building figures highest for nearly two decades

Homes in the UK are being constructed at the fastest rate for nearly 20 years, according to newly released figures.Statistics released by the National House-building Council (NHBC), whose warranty covers 80 per cent of all new houses in the UK, showed that 185,000 new properties were finished last year - the highest figure on record since 1989.After that year's high of 191,800 house construction dropped to around 159,000 new properties a year during the 90s but has risen again, thanks in no small part to government initiatives designed at creating more affordable housing across the UK."Our latest figures show that the rate of house-building is at its highest for more than a decade. The number of new homes built last year was up seven per cent on the previous year and 25 per cent higher than the number of homes built five years ago," commented Imtiaz Farookhi, chief executive of NHBC.The housing boom comes after the government set the construction industry a target of building at least 200,000 new homes every year by 2016.

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