Land buying in London

HLP L 190601 2025

There is a recognised shortage of housing across the UK. To meet these needs, under the last Prime Minister, the Government set a target of building 300,000 new homes across the country a year. In the next 20 years, its estimated that over five million homes will be needed to accommodate the expanding UK population.

The Mayor of London’s official assessment of housing need in London found that the city requires 66,000 new homes a year to provide enough homes for current and future Londoners.

In order for this number of houses to be built, housing developers like Fairview New Homes need to purchase land to build on.

This land is often owned by a private individual, or sometimes by a large corporation. In London it is very rarely an empty green space like a field or parkland, but is more likely to be what’s known as brownfield land. This is land that has been previously used for industrial buildings, but is now redundant. It might have a disused building on it or is currently being used as a temporary car park for example.

The third option is land that is currently being used for commercial or residential purposes, perhaps a garage, or a warehouse or shops, and the landowner is choosing to sell it.

Fairview New Homes identifies potential sites with areas deemed suitable for between 50 and 1,000 homes.  The housebuilder has a huge amount of expertise in gaining planning permission to convert unused brownfield sites, so will then begin the process of planning how many houses should be built on the proposed development, looking at the needs of the local area and working closely with the local authority.

Land that is for sale is usually offered with no planning permission, but sometimes there can already be planning approved for a particular number of houses.

Once the land is acquired by a developer, the planning applications are submitted, and the process of development can begin.

In the last 25 years, Fairview New Homes has been involved in the reclamation of more than 200 brownfield sites and has converted them into exceptional living environments.

The history of land buying in London

London began as no more than a few farmsteads over a thousand years ago. Enfield, Hampton and Chelsea started as villages but grew to become the towns we recognise today.

London continued to grow over the centuries, moving further away from the City of London where the tradesmen were based, out to areas such as Hampton and Eltham.

Until the 20th century land in London has been typically owned by large estates, from the Crown to the Church of England to individual private landowners such as the Duke of Westminster’s Estate, which owns much of the land in the west of London.

However, today the land in the Capital is bought and sold by a huge variety of individuals and companies, from global investment funds and international consortiums, to overseas investors and smaller private landowners.

There continues to be a lack of supply of land available in London which has led to less land being bought this year. However, with targets for house building still needing to be met, Fairview New Homes remains committed to land acquisition across London and the South East in order to build the stunning developments for which it is recognised.