1988 volume 20(10) pages 1385 – 1396

Cite as:
Couch C, 1988, "Aspects of structural change in speculative housing production: a case study in Merseyside" Environment and Planning A 20(10) 1385 – 1396

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Aspects of structural change in speculative housing production: a case study in Merseyside

C Couch

Received 23 February 1987; in revised form 17 November 1987

Abstract. In this paper I describe, and attempt to provide explanations for, changes in the structure of speculative-housing production in Wirral, in Merseyside, from 1971 to 1985. I begin with a description of the changing structure of the industry nationally, noting particularly the trend towards seller concentration. Differences between these national trends and those pertaining to Wirral are reported, including the increase in the market dominance of local small firms. I then consider local variations in market characteristics and those in production which may account for these differences. I conclude that this divergence is most probably explained by a relative decline in local housing demand and by changes in the local land markets, both of which make investment in the area less attractive to large national housebuilding firms.

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