An increase in housing supply will do nothing to reduce prices if it caters for an entirely different demand.
You what? Seriously, where is this piffle being cooked up?
The proposals would allow for new developments to be almost twice the guideline size for affordable housing.
Eh? So building twice as many houses won’t increase the supply of housing by, umm, twice as much?
The impact of a free-for-all will be huge – not only because developers are likely to prefer to convert remaining heritage outbuildings, but because of the chilling effect this prospect is already having on schemes to build homes for local people.
Since the reduction in capital grants, the best mechanism for creating affordable housing has been through granting planning permission on so-called exception sites. Where the landowner knows there is no possibility of selling to developers at open market housing rates, affordable housing is cross-subsidised by a small percentage of open market value properties.
But with the prospect of a free run at open market development with few strings attached, values are set to rise sharply and we will kiss goodbye to the only realistic opportunity for development land at prices that can deliver housing for local people.
Lawksalive. She really is insisting that building more houses will raise house prices.
Suburbanisation of our national parks might also deliver the final coup de grace to their fragile ecosystems, already under pressure from changing grazing patterns over recent decades. While cattle and sheep make way for pony paddocks in lower lying areas, loss of grazing livestock from the open moor will lead to a further degradation from heather to gorse. Who can blame them if hill farmers, asset rich and cash flow near zero, opt to fragment or sell their holdings and livestock. They have long struggled to maintain their way of life with scant recognition of their service to conserve this precious landscape on our behalf.
And then she worries that more entirely unproductive land might be opened up as space to build those scarce houses upon?
Sarah Wollaston is a Tory MP.
We’re fucked, aren’t we?