Willy Hutton really is quite amazing

Today it\’s all about the property market. About how houses are too expensive and Something Must Be Done!

At which point he entirely fails to mention, even to dismiss it, the simple fact that cheaper housing will only come about through a relaxtion of the planning system. If, as is indeed true, 50% or more of the value of a house in the south of England is in the piece of paper that allows a house to be built, then the obvious answer to the question of how we get cheaper houses is to issue more pieces of paper.

To propose absolutely any reform of the housing system without remarking upon this truth is simply to be ignorant of the subject under discussion.

But then this is Hutton, isn\’t it?

12 comments on “Willy Hutton really is quite amazing

  1. Well, indeed. Free the land!

    The problem, as I’ve often said, is the number of rugged right wingers who suddenly turn into Maoists when faced with the prospect of estates full of Proles on their (inflatedly valued) doorsteps.

  2. I think he’s confused. He says that housing is too expensive for most people and that it is over-valued, but that he wants a buoyant housing market to be a sign of a healthy economy and yet wants more housing to be built which would surely depress prices and then says falling prices must be a bad thing.

  3. One of the objectives of Agenda 21, to which the clowns in Downing Street subscribes, is to empty the land and push everybody into high-density housing. The solution is for the British to adopt the high-rise appartment blocks that is so common on the continent and New York.

    Agenda 21 also advocates the abolition of right to own land, and planning permissions and the host of central government laws restricting land use is just there to undermine the right to do with your property what you want.

    This not going to change in the near term.

  4. @IanB ‘The problem, as I’ve often said, is the number of rugged right wingers who suddenly turn into Maoists when faced with the prospect of estates full of Proles on their (inflatedly valued) doorsteps.’

    I don’t want proles living near me not because they’re proles (ie poor and ill educated) but because they often don’t behave very nicely.

    If they keep themselves to themselves and are good neighbours, fine. If they have screaming rows at 2am, leave sofas in the garden and burgle their neighbours, not so much.

    Where my right wingery comes in is the culture is fucked and the law of the land, which you could once rely on as a cultural backstop, is no longer enforced in so many minor ways that affect the quality of life.

    Build another 100,000 prison places, fill them with antisocial thugs and the problem will be solved. Absent that it won’t be.

  5. Taylor Woodrow refers to its “ongoing strategy ) of prioritising margin over volume”which translates that they’d rather build a few expensive houses thanloads of cheap ones. So they’re not going to crash their own market by satisfying demand are they?.Since the banks are on the hook for all those inflated mortgages they don’t want the country flooded with affordable housing either. So basically we’re screwed.Thanks right-wing delusionists : you’ve managed to undermine capitalism.

  6. “I don’t want proles living near me not because they’re proles (ie poor and ill educated) but because they often don’t behave very nicely.

    If they keep themselves to themselves and are good neighbours, fine. If they have screaming rows at 2am, leave sofas in the garden and burgle their neighbours, not so much.”

    So, you don’t want proles living next to you.

  7. @ Ian B

    Speaking as a prole myself, I can say without compunction that words cannot express how fucking mutual the feeling is ..

  8. I can think of any number of ways to lower house prices.
    Ban mortgages. 100% deposits.
    Window taxes.
    Make landlords pay council tax and raise said tax 300% to pay for the true cost of local services.
    And if you don’t like my principles, I have others. (Although I think Hutton has enough stupid ideas of his own, he doesn’t need any more of mine.)

  9. bloke in france

    The quickest and most effective way of making house prices fall would be to raise interest rates. By a lot. Would have the unfortunate additional effect of making a lot of people homeless and bankrupting every bank, but hey, no gain without pain……

  10. DBC Reed: So they’re not going to crash their own market by satisfying demand are they?

    The Mars factory should only produce one Mars Bar per week and auction it off to the highest bidder.

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