Cheshire East Council has today released figures which demonstrate a housing land supply figure of 7.5 years.
The numbers offer a rise from a figure of 7.2 years in the same period in the previous year, which means there is now greater opportunity for people wanting to get on the housing ladder.
Council bosses say it also puts the authority in a strong position to prevent unplanned, uncoordinated schemes.
The increased figure of 7.5 years supply of housing land places the council comfortably above the five-year threshold, which all councils are expected to demonstrate when contesting planning applications that run contrary to local planning guidelines.
Under national planning policy, planning inspectors can approve controversial applications where a local planning authority cannot show that it has a five-year housing land supply.
This is an issue which has led to a number of unpopular housing schemes in the open countryside on the edges of towns and villages in previous years.
There was record housebuilding in 2018/19 – with a total of 3,062 new homes built in Cheshire East.
Cllr Toni Fox, Cheshire East Council’s cabinet member for planning, commented: “This latest assessment means we can properly meet the demand for new homes, including affordable housing, that people need.
“It also helps ensure a sustainable workforce for our thriving economy in Cheshire East and a sufficient margin to ensure we have greater control over our planning decisions in future.
Cllr Fox added: “I’m encouraged that many house builders are working positively with us and getting new homes built in a prompt and planned manner.
“We can now focus on ensuring that the remaining sites in our local plan are implemented as soon as possible and that the planning conditions are fully adhered to, in the interests of all our communities.”
As of 31st March 2019, the council was required to show that 11,802 new dwellings could be built over the subsequent five years.
It is now able to show that 17,733 new homes can be built – equivalent to a 7.5-year supply.
Cheshire East describes itself as one of the busiest planning authorities in the country.