Can Dawn Foster actually think?

So of course the Blairs have jumped on the property gravy train, snapping up more than two dozen flats in Manchester through a company Cherie and one of their sons, Euan, own; passing on properties from Cherie to her children as gifts, thus avoiding stamp duty, and ultimately amassing £27m worth of property, much of which is let out and has all already risen in value.

While house prices rise and first-time buyer rates remain static, using wealth to buy property is far more stable an investment than stocks. The financial affairs of the Blairs and the property market tell us an extraordinary amount about the housing crisis. Guardian research revealed earlier this week that two-bed rentals are out of reach of most people on average incomes in many parts of the country. In the areas where homes are more affordable, and starting a family possible, there are often employment issues.

Apparently not.

It’s bad that they own and rent out two dozen flats. It’s bad that renting a flat is expensive. Slightly missing the point that people who own and then rent out flats reduce the rents that must be paid to rent a flat. Greater supply does depress prices you know.

Economics and The Guardian columnist, never a good mix.

21 thoughts on “Can Dawn Foster actually think?”

  1. All the problems with the Blairs would be cured if he were arrested, charged, tried, convicted and hanged.

  2. So Much For Subtlety

    Greater supply does depress prices you know.

    Unless the Prime Minister owns a large amount of property. In which case he is unlikely to do a damn thing to reduce the costs of housing or increase the supply of houses.

    This is a clear conflict of interest in a sector where the main cost is the government permission.

  3. This
    “Slightly missing the point that people who own and then rent out flats reduce the rents that must be paid to rent a flat. Greater supply does depress prices you know.”
    Is normally true but under Blair the Government often paid whatever landlords asked.

  4. All the problems with the Blairs would be cured if he were arrested, charged, tried, convicted and hanged.

    *All* the problems? No, Cherie’s face would still be on view.

  5. Dearime has it in a nutshell.

    As for Tim N ( and 1789-like allusions) I can see no reason that Cherie’s death mask cannot grace one of our fine museums. Alongside that of her dear husband.

  6. You do not increase supply by letting out property: the important component is land which is inelastic in supply, so investing in landed property just causes land price inflation> house price inflation> increased rents and mortgages> decreased spending in shops > stagnation. Si monumentum requiris circumspice. Adam Smith, Turgot, Quesnay had all this sorted before the French Revolution you know. ( Martin Wolf in FT is keeping it up to date while attacking Osborne for not doing anything really in his Budget to help the next generation)

  7. Just what we need from DBC. A lovely nugget of ignorance deposited dog-turd like upon the rug– with extra-added Latin.

    Ausburke would need the assistance of Lewis and Clark to find his own arse. And then help from Lewis and Morse to get the “use it to sit down” idea.Malice and Folly (what a great name for a firm of solicitors) are the only department in which he is self-sufficient.

  8. Family makes investment decision. So far it’s working out OK for them.
    No! says Guardian. They should invest their money in dodgy Kazakh oilfields or African diamond mines instead.

  9. DBC,
    You have to concede that landlords are helping spur new building. They provide capital up-front (buying off-plan), which helps the builders’ cashflow.

  10. I remember around the time Blair came to power house prices were dirt cheap. Isn’t it odd he made a fortune from something he had some control over?

  11. If the property market were a market and responded to market forces I’d agree. It isn’t and it doesn’t. It’s a rigged game with supply artificially limited in order to enrich property owners at the expense of the future.

  12. Bloke not in Cymru

    When are we going to see him outed as a serial tax avoider though, surely at the moment that’s worse than being a war criminal.
    I think one of the worst things about Hilary Clinton is that it might make cherie think she has a chance of power.

  13. BiG: exactly. Over the years I’ve seen the property market does not operate according to classical supply & demand economics. Years ago I used to be involved in local planning, and saw that if there was the option to build 100 houses at £100,000 each or 200 houses you didn’t get 200 houses at £50,000 each you got 200 houses still at £100,000 each.

  14. I assume Muslims are enjoined from getting near Ms Foster.

    Is her position that you either buy a house or live in a tent? Rental properties fill a broad need. And they have to be owned by someone. Owning rental properties is now evil? Tell renters their landlords are evil for renting to them.

  15. “Is her position that you either buy a house or live in a tent?”

    No, her true position is that property is theft, like any true Lefty, but because the masses keep wanting to buy their own bit of land and property, she can’t decry them, there’s too many of them.

    However people who own property and rent it out can be safely demonised as kulaks, legitimate targets for liquidisation. The only proper owner of rental property in her eyes would be the State.

  16. “Slightly missing the point that people who own and then rent out flats reduce the rents that must be paid to rent a flat. Greater supply does depress prices you know.”

    Greater supply does indeed depress prices, but greater demand increases them. More people buying to rent means fewer owner occupiers means more people looking to rent.

  17. @ Paul & Liberal Yank
    The relative impact on supply of flats through increase in buy-to-let is far greater than the impact on supply/demand for owner-occupation since the number of owner-occupiers is more than four times the number of non-student private tenants (I think it is more than 4 times all private tenants but the number is unknown since I don’t have data for all students in multi-occupied houses) and is also greater than on the demand for flats to let since demand exceeds supply so adding a few to each will get it marginally closer to balance.
    The increase in buy-to-let will marginally decrease the clearing price for rentals. [Because some would-be purchasers will buy new-builds or houses further afield from London and that latter will absorb into owner-occupation houses that would otherwise have been “second-home” “holiday cottages”].

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