Alastair Stewart

Alastair Stewart

Alastair Stewar has almost 30 years experience of the construction industry as equities analyst, journalist and columnist. He writes a monthly column on the residential market for Property Week and sits on the housebuilding panel of the Experian Construction Forecasting Committee.

 

 

 

  • Housing-estate_shutterstock_cred-Ewelina-Wachala-PW060418
    Online

    No crisis signs for housebuilders

    2022-05-11T23:00:00

    Cost-of-living crisis, rising interest rates, Covid, Brexit and a grinding war in Ukraine. Cue carnage for the housing market? For housebuilders, so far, it’s still a case of ‘crisis, what crisis?’

  • Stock-market_credit_shutterstock_Phongphan_416888221
    News

    Investors vote with their wallets

    2022-04-12T23:00:00

    When the UK’s top eight stock-market-listed housebuilders announced combined profit writedowns of more than £1bn over three days to pay for recladding, investors might have been expected to press the panic button.

  • Putin-shutterstock_2131360371-Photographer-RM-PW180322
    News

    A Russian threat on the home front

    2022-03-17T00:00:00

    “Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” Mike Tyson’s famous quip has a chilling resonance for a world plotting a recovery from a global pandemic – but now facing off an infinitely nastier brute.

  • Column data colour graph
    Insight

    London ends rental drought

    2022-02-17T00:00:00

    London rental levels have finally shaken off the curse of George Osborne, with agents now foreseeing residential rents in the capital rising faster than the rest of the country for the first time since the ex-chancellor’s 2015 Budget put the kibosh on the sector for close on seven years.

  • Cladding removal
    Insight

    What is cladding levy rationale?

    2022-01-20T00:00:00

    There is a similar sense of politicians grasping at straws when you compare Australia’s attempts to deport Novak Djokovic and Michael Gove’s threat to make developers pay £4bn for recladding mid-rise housing blocks. Maybe the housing secretary formulated some of the policy while stuck in a BBC lift for half ...

  • Modular housing craned in
    Insight

    Has MMC’s moment finally come?

    2021-12-09T00:00:00

    ‘Modern’ methods of construction (MMC) have been the next big thing for building houses since the Romans or earlier.

  • UK brick stocks
    Insight

    Housebuilders not bricking it yet

    2021-11-18T00:00:00

    The abiding metaphor for property is ‘bricks and mortar’, so data on their availability is as good a barometer as any on the relative fortunes of real estate, especially housebuilding. Judging by the latest, it looks like bricks are in shorter supply than, supposedly, turkeys for Christmas.

  • Insulate Britain protest
    Insight

    Time to fight carbon with carbon

    2021-10-21T00:00:00

    Are you, like me and most Brits, trying to do your bit to save the planet, but totally hacked off by the nihilistic tactics of Insulate Britain? Can I suggest a way to stop the lunatics from gluing themselves to the M25: next time they pounce, turn the heating up ...

  • RESI 2021
    Insight

    RESI Convention ushered in a hybrid future

    2021-09-16T00:00:00

    I really must get out more. That realisation dawned on me and possibly everyone else at last week’s RESI Convention, held on terra firma at Celtic Manor on 8 to 9 September rather than via the cloud.

  • Steel piles building site
    Insight

    Builders left bitter by share slide

    2021-08-05T00:00:00

    “We announced fantastic results, our order book went up strongly, we increased the land bank and our net cash position soared. And guess what? Our shares went down.”

  • Housebuilding
    Insight

    Wall of money needs a home

    2021-07-08T00:00:00

    “There’s a wall of money looking for a home,” a financier told me after one in a flurry of recent private equity-funded acquisitions. Where better a home for these billions than in, well, homes?

  • For sale sign
    Insight

    Ditch the sou’wester for shades

    2021-06-10T00:00:00

    “You don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows,” a now newly octogenarian Bob Dylan howled in 1965’s Subterranean Homesick Blues. As for housing, you definitely don’t need an economist to know which way prices are going.

  • Housebuilding
    Insight

    Land scarcity sparks costs surge

    2021-05-13T00:00:00

    Things couldn’t get rosier for the housebuilders, it would seem. Sales volumes and prices are up, irrespective of dwindling government support.

  • Darlington
    Insight

    A levelling-up boost for housing

    2021-04-15T00:00:00

    By ‘eck, the BBC is to drag swathes of its London staff up North and the regions in the name of the government’s ‘levelling up’ agenda. It’s bound to price some locals out of the market. And not just for their macchiatos.

  • Dutch brick houses
    Insight

    Why we should stick with bricks

    2021-03-18T00:00:00

    The government’s obsession with modern methods of construction (MMC) seems to know no bounds. Even the chancellor is now a convert. However, I still harbour a heretical allegiance to the most ancient method of construction – brick.

  • Aluminium cladding
    Insight

    Cladding victims get stung again

    2021-02-18T00:00:00

    The headlines were improving for Number 10. Britain’s vaccine roll-out was, as Ursula von der Leyen admitted, a ‘speed boat’ to the EU’s ‘tanker’ and Boris was seen as having relocated his mojo.

  • Raphael Rooms, Vatican
    Insight

    Even the Black Death had its silver lining

    2021-01-21T00:00:00

    The lights are once more going out all over Europe. But the darkest hours in pandemics have often heralded glorious dawns. The horrors of the Great War and even deadlier flu gave way to the Roaring Twenties; the vast social changes wrought by the Black Death ignited the Renaissance.

  • Finance chart Covid-19
    Insight

    Pandemic? What pandemic?

    2020-12-17T00:00:00

    “Tis the season to be jolly careful,” the once ebullient Boris Johnson cautioned the nation, confirming the second lockdown would end in tiers.

  • McCarthy&Stone Retirement home PW120419_
    Insight

    Corporate bids back in housing

    2020-11-12T00:00:00

    You wait years for corporate bids in the housing sector and then at least three come along at once. Could it be the late noughties all over again?

  • Alone in office
    Insight

    Office life needs a radical rethink

    2020-10-15T00:00:00

    I recently spent the two least productive days since the start of lockdown. I went back to the office.

More by Alastair Stewart