Jacob Rees-Mogg’s Innovative Housing Crisis Solution

Jacob Rees-Mogg has co-authored a paper for the Institute of Economic Affairs along with top wonk Radomir Tylecote on how to use freedom-based solutions to tackle the housing crisis. The package of solutions include cutting stamp duty, permitted development rights for individual streets, and importantly selectively re-classifying some ‘green belt’ designated land that achieves none of its official purposes. Harder for Tory grassroots to dismiss this when even Jacob Rees-Mogg is saying nimbyism has gone too far…

‘Green belt’ land includes large areas of scrubland and even brownfield sites. Building on just 3.9% of London’s green belt near railway stations would provide one million well connected new homes – replacing parts of the green belt that are not green or pleasant at all. This is a policy that would help fix one of the biggest problems facing Britain today, and it wouldn’t cost a thing…

mdi-timer 22 July 2019 @ 15:34 22 Jul 2019 @ 15:34 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
UK Experiencing Worst Decade for Housebuilding On Record

The Tories are telling the truth that house building is at its highest in a decade, unfortunately that spin doesn’t tell the whole story. The Centre for Policy Studies has revealed that despite a recent uptick, this decade is set to see house-building in England at the lowest level of any decade since the Second World War. It’s not good enough to get back to where we were year-on-year, more needs to be done to make up for a decade of lost growth…

In the 1960s, new building in England reached the equivalent of one home for every 14 people. By the 2010s, that ratio has collapsed to one home for every 43 people.

Director of the CPS, Robert Colvile described the building of fewer homes as “part of a pattern stretching back half a century.” The CPS called on Ministers to “take bold action in 2019 to ensure that the 2020s become the decade in which we break this hugely damaging cycle.” They’re right, it is also an electoral imperative for the Tories…

mdi-timer 2 January 2019 @ 12:41 2 Jan 2019 @ 12:41 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
CPS Claim ‘Cost-Neutral’ Policy Will Create One Million Homeowners

The Centre for Policy Studies has come up with a novel proposal which they say could see one million more people become homeowners in one year. ‘Help to Own’ aims to make it easier for ‘Generation Rent’ to buy while also incentivising landlords to sell to their tenants by introducing a scheme for a single year that would pool capital gains tax receipts on the sale of rented homes in order to then grant them back as rebates to landlords and tenants.

33% of each rebate would go to the landlord while 66% would go towards the deposit of the purchasing tenant. The CPS have crunched the numbers and say the net effect would be to increase revenue to the Treasury, while the tenant would only need to stump up the cash for 3.33% of the property upfront, with the capital gains rebate making up the rest of the 10% deposit they need to get on the property ladder. Like ‘Right to Buy’, ‘Help to Own’ could be a game changer in granting people a tangible stake in the economy, all at no extra cost to taxpayers…

mdi-timer 15 October 2018 @ 12:16 15 Oct 2018 @ 12:16 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
“Ending Austerity” & Building Council Homes

Since the Tories came into government the national debt has risen by over 70%. By any measure that is hardly evidence of the savage austerity of left-wing rhetoric.  Britain is still running a deficit, in 2018/19, taxpayers will fund interest payments of some £53 billion. A billion-a-week to service the national debt, you can put that on the side of three red buses.

Spreadsheet Phil is getting nearer to finally closing the deficit that George Osborne promised to close by 2015. This should not be taken by spending ministers as a signal to up spending, the national debt still has to be serviced and it would be prudent to start paying down the debt. Likewise giving councils carte blanche to borrow to finance an extended council house building programme will add to the debt burden. If that is what Theresa May is signalling in her conference speech it is bad politics for the Tories.

In Asia it is not uncommon for the state to build low cost housing for sale at below market rates. If councils were encouraged to build and sell properties they would not end up on the state’s balance sheet. It would spread capital ownership more widely by allowing people to own their own homes. It is good politics because property-owning democracies don’t tend to elect socialist governments…

By all means encourage councils to actively build new developments on their land. Scrapping the government cap on how much they can borrow to fund new developments should not however be a licence to build another generation of council estates – the petri dish for municipal socialism. The government should insist that the low cost homes should be offered on construction to qualified buyers who would have to be owner occupiers.  When Phil Hammond announces the budget at the end of the month it would be good if the removal of the cap was coupled with a new “right to buy” that granted local residents the right buy any new council homes built. Councils would be obligated to offer new build homes for sale without the high profit margins often commanded by private sector developers. Politically it is a winner and the Treasury would be happy that long-term it would pay down the government debt used to fund the construction.

mdi-timer 3 October 2018 @ 15:49 3 Oct 2018 @ 15:49 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Housebuilding Going Off a Cliff?

Worrying data from the CIPS showing a sharp drop in purchasing managers’ confidence in the residential construction category. Suggests a lack of confidence in the government’s ability to make housebuilding its main domestic mission…

Actual 2017 housing starts are at a ten-year high, with the National House-Building Council expecting housing starts to rise further in 2018. Anecdotal evidence from industry sources suggests foreign construction workers are becoming scarce as returning growth in Europe attracts them to return home. Labour supply may well be a limiting factor for housebuilders…

H/T @rupert_seggins, @GeorgeTrefgarne
mdi-timer 2 February 2018 @ 10:51 2 Feb 2018 @ 10:51 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
OBR: Hammond’s Budget Rabbit Will Increase House Prices 0.3%

Hammond’s abolition of stamp duty for first time buyers might be a tax cut, but it doesn’t go anything like as far as the Institute of Economic Affairs, Adam Smith Institute and Taxpayers’ Alliance were hoping (they wanted it abolished for everyone). This line from the OBR is a tough one for the government to explain: the policy will increase house prices by 0.3%.

Given the OBR’s forecasting accuracy this is a rounding error that is less than the cash value of the stamp duty cut…

mdi-timer 22 November 2017 @ 14:18 22 Nov 2017 @ 14:18 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Previous Page Next Page