Thursday, Mar 07, 2013

We own land... oh hang on, no we don't, so just give us some for free and then give us money!

Chartered Institute of Housing: Take radical decisions on public land to help tackle housing shortage

“One example of public land being used successfully is the London Olympics so it can happen – we need to make it happen again.” Grainia Long was taking part in a panel discussion on getting Britain building again, chaired by BBC home affairs editor Mark Easton.
Her point was echoed by fellow panellist Peter Quinn, business development director at Lovell Partnerships. He said: “Rather than a subsidy government could release land for free for social and private homes.” Grainia Long added: “If we are going to build the homes we need to deal with our housing crisis we need a building programme on the scale of which we haven’t seen for decades.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 12:47 PM (3920 views) Add Comment


1. timmy t said...

Oh for God's sake - there isn't a housing shortage - there are thousands of houses standing empty and lots of people own several. Take some radical decisions which disincentivises this and we'd achieve the same thing without f***ing up the country unnecessarily.

Thursday, March 7, 2013 02:54PM Report Comment

2. enuii said...

+1, the whole thing can be solved by disincentivising BTL to release rented property onto the market and therefore encouraging investment into things that are economically useful instead.

Thursday, March 7, 2013 03:08PM Report Comment

3. mark wadsworth said...

TT, quite clearly there isn't a housing shortage, there are plenty of houses for tenants to live in and pay rent for.

Thursday, March 7, 2013 03:59PM Report Comment

4. libertas said...

These people do not understand that excess prices are a monetary phenomena caused by monetary policy, i.e. too much money printing, borrowing and too low interest rates. The proposals these people are demanding will require further money printing and borrowing, so will exacerbate the affordability crisis.

This is when misconception and false solutions become a race to the bottom.

Thursday, March 7, 2013 04:06PM Report Comment

5. libertas said...

What people do not understand, is that we do not need more houses, we need to shift economic activity to productive uses, towards new factories, farming, mining, fishing, etc.

What we have too much of are regulations harming those activities and taxes which dampen investment.

Also, too many policies which destroy savings and investment, and the weak currency policy destroys domestic demand, which should be the mainstay of a strong economy.

Thursday, March 7, 2013 04:08PM Report Comment

6. letthemfall said...

Sounds like a good idea. I'll take a couple of free acres to being with please. Hang on, better make it 100.

Thursday, March 7, 2013 04:59PM Report Comment

7. libertas said...

Letthemfall: Only big corporations with CEO's in the local Freemasonic lodge will get those perks. You will get to pay for the infrastructure.

Thursday, March 7, 2013 06:22PM Report Comment

8. mombers said...

@7 Libertas:
"You will get to pay for the infrastructure."
I thought you were against getting landowners to pay for infrastructure?

Thursday, March 7, 2013 07:56PM Report Comment

9. mark wadsworth said...

Mombers, nice one.

But I'm with LTF on this one, if they are handing out free land and getting taxpayers to pay for the infrastructure, then stick me down for 100 acres as well. If they pay me enough, I might just take 200 off their hands.

Thursday, March 7, 2013 08:29PM Report Comment

10. Pig said...

Sounds like they are talking about side-stepping/puncturing the speculative bubble.

What is the name of this site again ?

Thursday, March 7, 2013 10:26PM Report Comment

11. libertas said...

Mombers, I am for land owners paying for infrastructure, indeed they once did, prior to the world wars, when taxes were sensible, when all the streets and lighting, public spaces, etc. were paid for by private subscription.

What I said was, that you the tax payer will pay for infrastructure.

Are you foolish enough to think that a Land Value Tax will be spent on infrastructure?!?! What planet are you living on!! It will go on banker bonuses and bombs.

Thursday, March 7, 2013 10:35PM Report Comment

12. stuartking said...

Libertas: Unless you are talking purely about major roads, motorways, dual carriageways, A roads etc, which are financed out of local and national taxation, landowners/developers do initially pay for the infrastructure, including streets, lighting, public spaces etc. Section 106 agreements, conditions of planning consent, can also be used to channel money from the developer into other local projects or facilities not necessarily within the development area.

Generally, once the 'infrastructure' has been completed to the satisfaction of the responsible local authority, usually a county council or unitary authority, it is then 'adopted' by the local authority which assumes ownership and takes over future maintenance.

The cost of the infrastructure is usually passed on by developer to the property purchaser(s).

Friday, March 8, 2013 02:21AM Report Comment

13. mark wadsworth said...

Piddly what level of reality do you operate on?

"Are you foolish enough to think that a Land Value Tax will be spent on infrastructure?!?! What planet are you living on!! It will go on banker bonuses and bombs."

Do you not grasp the fact that a tax on land values is a payment for the value of the infrastructure which surrounds anybody's land?

The landowner will be paying for infrastructure.

What the tax is spent on is a slightly different topic.

Let me see if I can explain this to somebody who is mentally ill and complete hypocrite anyway:

When you go into a shop and buy a newspaper, you are paying for the newspaper (that's like the landowner paying for infrastructure with LVT).

The newsagents can spend his profits from selling newspapers on anything he likes (that's like the government putting the LVT into the pot with any other revenues it has and spending it on whatever it likes).

Friday, March 8, 2013 07:37AM Report Comment

14. nickb said...

But presumably only a small fraction of the uplift in location values is captures by section 106 agreements compared to what could be reaped by a proper LVT. negotiation of a 106 agreement also pits developers with their fancy spiv lawyers against poorly renumerated and overworked council slaves. A recent example of developments where I used to live. T***o got permission for new mega boxes on the outskirts of Nottingham. In return they agreed to tart up some local infrastructure. This tarted up some parks in the immediate vicinity (good for the new stores) and redirected local routes to pass by the stores. In my home town, Matlock, S***b***y reworked the traffic routes through the whole old town centre so that you are forced to drive by the store via a crazy new one way system. Am I right in presuming that these are outcomes of the S106 agreements?

Friday, March 8, 2013 10:04AM Report Comment

15. stuartking said...


Yes, I think you are correct there - money often isn't a lot and lawyers can find ways around things or at least minimising the cost.

Plus, several years ago, Exeter City Council lost a lot of its agreed Section 106 money because, if I remember correctly, it failed to spend it within the time frame agreed in the consent - of course, that was non-specific cash as opposed to agreed infrastructure spending, such as roads in a new estate.

A land value tax would be a better solution.

Friday, March 8, 2013 10:21AM Report Comment

16. mark wadsworth said...

@ NickB, yes, thanks to T*sco, there is a crazy one-way system in Leytonstone where the north and south bound traffic have to cross over each other twice.

LVT is of course far better.

Friday, March 8, 2013 10:37AM Report Comment

17. nickb said...

@Stuart, Mark
Why do we put up with this BS?! If I was a local shopkeeper I would be reaching for the jellignite. Or a noose.

Friday, March 8, 2013 11:18AM Report Comment

18. stuartking said...

@17 Nick, 'we' don't but the Daily Mail-reading X-Factor, Coronation Street crowd do - and they are more than 'we'.

Friday, March 8, 2013 11:25AM Report Comment

19. mark wadsworth said...

NickB, which particular level of BS do you mean? Giving away land free to Tory party donors, one-way systems, s106 agreements?

As it happens, I think that Tesco was good for the Leytonstone High Street, they've a lovely big free car park so you can park there and go and visit the other shops etc. It's just absolutely awful for motorists.

Now, this was all fine as long as I lived there because I could walk everywhere (including to Tesco), whether making life hell for motorists is a good idea is more of a political thing (I'm agnostic on that one) and by and large, if you live in the area and want to go to a supermarket by car, Tesco Leytonstone is not near the top of the list, negotiating half a mile of high street or Green man roundabout takes a good twenty minutes.

Friday, March 8, 2013 11:33AM Report Comment

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