Dear Daily Telegraph: Yes, this is the point of the plan

Thousands of house prices could fall by a third or more if Coalition Government proposals to change planning rules in favour of developers become law, knocking hundreds of thousands of pounds off some of the most desirable homes in the green belt.

Yup. Just what the policy is meant to be doing.

The horrifically high price of housing in the South of England is driven by the fact that we hand out too few permissions to build houses in the South of England.

Hand out more permissions and prices will fall.

Exactly and precisely the aim of the policy.

10 comments on “Dear Daily Telegraph: Yes, this is the point of the plan

  1. It is not horrific if you own a house already. Like, I might suggest, most of the Tellie’s readers do.

    In fact it might be quite comforting.

  2. Prices may fall until there is no more land to hand out. Then they go up again, worse than before because there will be no future prospect of more land.

    Ah but there is a solution. If you can’t build out, build up. Thus permits to build new houses on the top of others.

    A more sensible alternative would be to make it more attractive to build in other parts of the country, or let prices determine where houses are built.

    People want homes in the South East becasue it is preferred there. Why?

  3. Is there not a danger that an increase in housebuilding in the South East will lead more to an increase in the population of the South East, rather than a fall in house prices in the area? Especially as migration can come from the whole of Europe.

  4. I’ll concede London is a fantastic place if you are incredibly wealthy, but most of the south east is a soulless cultural wasteland. Far better quality of life can be had for a third of the cash in most of northern England and the lowland belt of Scotland. But the economic argument for getting the state out of the way of the provision of houses for those with no soul is, I admit, overwhelming.

  5. @JohnB,

    Hong Kong has solved its chronic housing shortage in precisely that way. Slightly silly as there is actually stacks of undeveloped land in HK – there are about 10 acres of “country park” for every acre of skyscrapers. A better (and earlier) transport system would have been worth billions.

    Except HK’s government is now fighting the mother of all housing bubbles. Someone once told me it was spill-over from their ill-advised entry into an ill-fitting and doomed currency union with the United States, but as only one currency union is to be officially disparaged, and I have no interest in the further encouragement of speculation in favour of the HKD decoupling from the USD, I shall say no more!

  6. I did read, ages ago, in the London evening Standard I think,that a fall in house prices was followed by a rise in living standards-partly directly, from the fall in cost of housing, partly indirecly by divertibg capital into more productive areas.

  7. Crikey. I’ve been a near-solitary voice in the depressing comment sections saying to people, this is a good thing because prices will fall and they’re all like, no they won’t this is just PROFITS FOR DEVELAPPARS and stuff, so it’s nice the Tele are now backing me up, haha.

    It’s amazing how easy it is to turn a “conservative” into a socialist. Just suggest letting somebody build a house somewhere. This is one of the reasons why, to quote Hayek, “I am not a conservative”.

    They really are a fucking useless bunch the lot of them. It’s all Audrey Ffforbes Hamilton “We survived a labour government” and then “I have a friend on the planning committee” isn’t it? Just bourgeois socialism, that conservatism thing. Give me an old fashioned marxist any day of the week, at least they’re honest about it. My conclusion after a couple of weeks of those comment sections is that I hope that Teh Devvellerpers really do “concrete over the South East” and every last one of these whinging upper-middle-class rent-seeking scrounging scumbags ends up with a council estate adjoining their poxy rural plots, I really do. Words cannot describe how much I despise these people, frankly, and their quality of life save the bluebell wood countryside is our national treasure crapola.

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