The number of new houses built in Scotland last year fell by 2,300 – or nine per cent – new statistics have indicated. Figures from the Scottish parliament suggest that in 2005-06 some 26,000 new houses were completed and this figure fell to around 23,700 this year. Hardships in obtaining planning permission were among the factors that contributed to the shortfall, reports the Scotsman. Communities minister Stewart Maxwell commented: “The current rate of new house building is simply inadequate. This is why we have proposed a national goal to increase new housing supply to 35,000 a year by the middle of the next decade.” Individuals planning construction work of their own may find that they benefit from obtaining legal advice before carrying out any developments to ensure they are aware of any laws they must adhere to. The Council of Mortgage Lenders recently stated that it expects to see a rise in the number of home repossessions as house prices increase next year.