Jump to content
House Price Crash Forum
MattW

Shouldn't The Government Just Get On And Build More Council Houses?

Recommended Posts

Rather than these gimmicky electioneering policies like '20% your first London home for FTBs under 40', 'HTB', and 'shared ownership' shouldn't the Government just let Councils and Housing Associations get on with the business of building homes for rent?

I think in this was a better balance between the social rented and private rented homes could be established. In turn the housing market might sort itself out. It does annoy me a bit that my colleague can pay less rent on her 3 bedroomed council house (+ housing benefit) whereas I pay a lot more for my 2 br private rented flat

And let's start with building the right properties. Ground floor properties with decent disabled persons access. More 1 and 2 bedroomed homes for those affected by the 'bedroom tax'.

Of course, the Government, especially Tories, have a shadowy vested interest in keeping house prices high. What about their children - and grandchildren?

It's about time the Government considered us proles more carefully. After all, we have more voting power than the small number of affluent people who may likely vote for the crony Tories.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, of course they should. In the long run it would work out so much cheaper for everyone. But I have long given up hope that any government will do anything because it is simple and obvious and common sense. They care only about whatever will get them into power, and keep them there.

And of course stacks of MPs, including Labour, have BTLs and are doing quite nicely out of housing benefit, thanks very much. There is your reason why there is still tax relief on BTL mortgages and not for OOs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Of course they should. No brainer, though the 'social mix' policies adopted by local authorities would preclude the large-scale housing schemes seen immediately pre and post war. That would have to change, at the risk of creating large-scale ghettos of the poor/feckless, unless they were pretty clever about how they did it. As it stands the social housing bits developers are required to build at the moment make it hard to sell the private housing round about them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Far too simple (and obvious) a solution. Also goes against the whole Thatcherite home owning democracy thing. Personally I think selling off all the social housing was a disaster. To go back to a time before Thatch when governments and local authorities provided houses for its people would be to admit they were wrong in the 80s. (Of course, New Labour didn't undo the damage in their 13 years).

Shelter is a basic and fundamental need, the foundation to the rest of the economy working. Yet politicians and vested interests of the last 20 years have turned it into an 'asset class' essential for a bubble, election cycle economy. That this is seen as a good thing and they get away with it is the tragedy.

£20b+ in housing benefit. Allocate half of that into new social housing to rent and the country would be boosted - and be in a better place.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Absolutely.

It's a no brainer now.

Housing benefit bill up 300%+ since the social home sell off.

House prices up 300%+ in places since the social home sell off.

I hate social housing and council estates, but that was always sort of the point. Nobody wanted to live on them and there was stigma attached. Aside from that, they were much MUCH cheaper than forcing social tenants into private housing and then paying the rents via housing benefit.

It's an experiment that failed.

The most idiotic thing now would be to continue doing the same thing (i. e., not building enough social housing and just paying private HB rents) and expecting different results.

Build build build.

Stop the rent rent rent HB greed fest (let's not forget, it's not social tenants that benefit most from this - it's their landlords).

Building vs not building and paying HB rent instead is very obviously the lesser of two evils.

(It should also be noted the demise of social housing has had a very negative effect on the quality of private new build housing. It's terrible now compared to the private homes being built 30 years ago. Even if you're not a social tenant and want to buy your own private home, more social housing will both lower the price you pay and vastly improve the quality of what's available).

In the long run, nobody loses compared to the current shambles*.

(*Except greedy boomer landlords.)

Edited by byron78

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

£20b+ in housing benefit. Allocate half of that into new social housing to rent and the country would be boosted - and be in a better place.

I think I watched a programme that stated that it was 5% of the £20bn was now spent on building social rented homes.

Just before Right To Buy the figures of expenditure of Housing Benefit Vs social homes building was reversed. So £20bn (adj for inflation c.1980?) was spent on building council/HA homes and 5% was paid in Housing Benefit to private tenants. Who were then enjoying greater security of tenure.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They should build really solid houses that are near as possible maintenance free. It should be left up to the occupiers to do any maintenance. If they leave one in a sh*t state they don't get another. Some research should be done on sink estates to make sure lessons are learned.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Of course yep.

Tories won't do it 'cause they're devoted to protecting land prices by controlling supply.

Labour won't do it 'cause they've bought into the 'cutting the deficit' cr4p.

BoE have QE'ed £375bn and the housing supply problem is growing worse by the day.

They can easily QE another £100bn to fund investment in 1,000,000 much needed affordable homes. Young people benefit, old people benefit, govt. benefits (lower housing benefit bill), employment benefits, economy benefits.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I hate social housing and council estates, but that was always sort of the point. Nobody wanted to live on them and there was stigma attached. Aside from that, they were much MUCH cheaper than forcing social tenants into private housing and then paying the rents via housing benefit.

Disagree that there was a stigma, it was perfectly normal in the 50s/60s to live in a council house. It was how young married couples got a start in life. All my grandparents started off in council houses or tied housing.

When there was plentiful housing you got a social mix as there was room for everyone. Once you sell it off and make it "needs based" then obviously the profile of the tenants changes towards the stereotypical young mum with 5 kids and no job. Her needs are higher than the young professionals just starting out in life who would instead by given housing benefit to live in a private rental.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the Owen Jones book "Chavs" he asks Labour why they didn't build council housing and they said it was because they didn't trust local councils and thought the private sector would deliver sufficient housing.

Given this blatantly failed and the public overwhelmingly back council housing coming back why don't they just do it?

Surely any political party even slightly to the left of centre would make this a straightforward aim.

Maybe because (despite the hysterical bleating on here from the right wingers) Labour are in no way a left wing party.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you think voting or changing the government will improve your situation then prepare yourself for disappointment. You could be waiting for a lifetime for some future government to start some mass house building program which will be ineffective due to our open door immigration policy. The best you can do is move to a more affordable area.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As someone who lived on a council estate for 32 years the objective of lower end/council housing has always interested me.

I'd agree 100% if I trusted future governments to use them for what they are intended for and not just give them away again.

Right To Buy certainly needs to be abolished. My parents bought their council house in 1982/83. I was too young to object then! In their defence, they didn't realise that any homes would not be replaced with new council homes.

If I was going to become a philanthropic multi-millionaire I might buy up ex-LA homes in my city and sublet them to the council. I might start with the estates near the University of East Anglia and battle against the student landlords who snap up up the 3 bed houses with a decent sized living rooms who turn them into 4 bed houses and pokey living rooms. Bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha! :P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you think voting or changing the government will improve your situation then prepare yourself for disappointment. You could be waiting for a lifetime for some future government to start some mass house building program which will be ineffective due to our open door immigration policy. The best you can do is move to a more affordable area.

You do that and others cotton on and yet another nice area becomes out of range of purchase for local working people.....maybe the government are relying on inheritances to pay the deposits.....very wishful thinking, the money for most 'normal' families will be spent, gone, nothing left....longer life expectancy, poor pension provision,alzheimers and other brain and mobility afflictions......also sharing out a few thousand to children and step children would not cover the cost to buy never mind any depoist that would cover 5%.....5%of nothing is nothing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My god how things have changed over the past 7 years, it seems that council housing has become an obvious thing! (I`ve been on this site 7 years)

The problem is `where`s the money coming from`.

I think we can all work that out can`t we children.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You'd think that with all the billionaires that one would fancy him/herself as the next Peabody and commit to social house building. After all, none of them can take their money with them and presumably they have enough houses/planes/yachts already. An investment in social housing would keep their memory alive for generations which, judging by their vanity, would be a good investment. I wonder why none of them do anything big to really help society.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You'd think that with all the billionaires that one would fancy him/herself as the next Peabody and commit to social house building. After all, none of them can take their money with them and presumably they have enough houses/planes/yachts already. An investment in social housing would keep their memory alive for generations which, judging by their vanity, would be a good investment. I wonder why none of them do anything big to really help society.

It's a symptom of the self-regarding culture we live in and pervades all the social classes now....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You'd think that with all the billionaires that one would fancy him/herself as the next Peabody and commit to social house building. After all, none of them can take their money with them and presumably they have enough houses/planes/yachts already. An investment in social housing would keep their memory alive for generations which, judging by their vanity, would be a good investment. I wonder why none of them do anything big to really help society.

I can think of some explanations.

First, those who have inherited wealth are, by and large, educated from birth to keep that wealth in the family. Those who rebel, by and large, find ways of wasting their wealth (that proportion of the family's wealth not kept out of their hands by legal means) on variations of wine, women and gambling. Neither sort has the inclination to put money into social housing. The arts, perhaps - far more their style.

Those who come by wealth through commerce, if recent research is to be believed, have a good chance of being sociopaths. A group not known for their altruism.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You'd think that with all the billionaires that one would fancy him/herself as the next Peabody and commit to social house building. After all, none of them can take their money with them and presumably they have enough houses/planes/yachts already. An investment in social housing would keep their memory alive for generations which, judging by their vanity, would be a good investment. I wonder why none of them do anything big to really help society.

Pretty interesting point! I have no idea, other than to assume they are selfish.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Far too simple (and obvious) a solution. Also goes against the whole Thatcherite home owning democracy thing. Personally I think selling off all the social housing was a disaster. To go back to a time before Thatch when governments and local authorities provided houses for its people would be to admit they were wrong in the 80s. (Of course, New Labour didn't undo the damage in their 13 years).

I don't,

it was my mum's passport off of a violent council estate and into a decent area where she earned and paid her house off in entirity.

had she not done so I guess my chances in life would have been probably more restricted to joining the local(and equally violent) secondary school in that particular catchment area.

..the folks from that luxury establishment have something like a 40% GCSE a-c pass mark..even with grade inflation.

I have much more against the likes of labour who tried to do away with the government assisted place/bursary schemes for kids of low income but reasonable intellect. they desrve a chance, and labour pulled the rug from under them.

Edited by oracle

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This web site when I joined was Tory HQ

I feel like I'm among friends now

Ironically in the past the Tories were as keen on building social housing to pacify the great unwashed as Labour. It was one of the ways that Stanley Baldwin and his Chancellor Neville Chamberlain responded to the Great Depression. The Tory governments of the 1950s also had huge Council House building programs. Both parties seemed to abandon their commitment to jobs for all and homes for all some time in the late 1970s. Housing has been a disaster area pretty much continuously since that time. Edited by stormymonday_2011

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You'd think that with all the billionaires that one would fancy him/herself as the next Peabody and commit to social house building. After all, none of them can take their money with them and presumably they have enough houses/planes/yachts already. An investment in social housing would keep their memory alive for generations which, judging by their vanity, would be a good investment. I wonder why none of them do anything big to really help society.

Like the Cadbury family and Bournville. Unfortunately to become seriously minted, you need a selfish streak most people can't even begin to understand.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • The Prime Minister stated that there were three Brexit options available to the UK:   208 members have voted

    1. 1. Which of the Prime Minister's options would you choose?


      • Leave with the negotiated deal
      • Remain
      • Leave with no deal

    Please sign in or register to vote in this poll. View topic


×

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.