Retirement housing giant doubles target for offsite homes

McCarthy & Stone has announced that half of its future developments will be built using modern methods of construction (MMC) from 2024.

The retirement housing giant is doubling its commitment to use of MMC from 25% and has this week confirmed 40 new sites will be built through a partnership with Leeds-based light gauge steel framing company Sigmat.

mccarthy stone hexham

McCarthy Stone’s first MMC-built retirement community in Hexham, Northumberland opened last year

Five new sites will be built in this way in 2022, rising to 10 in 2023 and 25 in 2024, after which half of the company’s development plan is expected to be delivered through MMC.

The sites to start in 2022 include developments in Broadstairs in Kent, Stratford-on-Avon, west midlands, Warminster, Wiltshire and west Bridgford in Nottingham.

The announcement follows the opening of McCarthy Stone’s first MMC retirement community in Hexham, Northumberland last year. A McCarthy Stone spokesperson said its MMC method reduced typical build times by 15%, and future schemes are expected to reduce by 25%.

The National House Building Council has also announced a new accreditation and warranty for the form of MMC used by McCarthy Stone. Sigmat uses a category two primary structural solution which is fully built off-site.

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John Tonkiss, chief executive of McCarthy Stone said: “MMC is game-changing. Sigmat’s unique solution will further increase our build quality, control our costs, and most importantly, build more energy-efficient and greener communities.

“This announcement paves the way to a more cost-efficient and sustainable future, and our long term aim is now to build 50% of all our new retirement communities in this way. The new NHBC accreditation also adds further assurance and certainty.”

McCarthy Stone is the largest retirement developer and manager of retirement housing the UK. In the year to 31 October 2019 it generated a turnover of £725m and built 2,402 homes. However, its business was severely disrupted by the pandemic with turnover falling to £197m and just 832 completions in the year to 31 October 2020.