Category Archives: Uncategorized

Ed Balls’ speech – the wrong balance between austerity and investment?

The abject failure of the Tories to build enough new homes, and especially enough new genuinely affordable homes, should present Labour with a golden opportunity. The housing statistics are stark and concern about where a growing population will live has been … Continue reading

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If Labour wants to build 200,000 homes per year, it must invest

Labour’s conference this week needs to be about more than how to respond to the referendum result or whether to bail out the NHS. Important though they are, how to put flesh on the bones of Ed Miliband’s pledge to … Continue reading

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Social housing is popular, but social landlords are not. Is that the message?

Since September dawned, two interesting reports have been published recording views about social housing and social housing landlords. The first, from the Housing Partners consultancy, reported on a huge (but self-selecting) survey of tenants. It said that only 22% of the … Continue reading

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Bungalows, but not in my back yard

Nick Boles, the former planning minister, was a fan of bungalows. When he called for more to be built last year, especially for older people, he drew praise from the Telegraph and the Guardian (the latter characteristically reminded us that … Continue reading

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That sinking feeling*

It would be easy to condemn this weeks’ Policy Exchange report on ‘turning round’ Britain’s council estates. But it is important to separate out the spin and editorialising from the evidence in the report. Published by a think tank with … Continue reading

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OK Brandon, let’s see the evidence

The right to buy has become a big issue again. The new Housing Minister, Brandon Lewis, has taken a bullish stance, as reported widely in the newspapers yesterday, for example here and here. The new controversy follows endless reports about Councils being … Continue reading

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I’m troubled and I don’t know why*

There is nothing wrong with a Government setting up a special programme to help those families facing the most disadvantage to overcome the problems they face. Indeed it is laudable to see resources devoted to this objective. So why is … Continue reading

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Giving away council houses

Next June it will be 40 years since it was first proposed that council houses should be given away to tenants. It was too radical even for Margaret Thatcher, but there is always someone who will resuscitate a daft idea. … Continue reading

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Some good ideas for using just a tiny fraction of those surpluses

With housing associations surpluses flying through the roof – the 15 biggest London associations recording more than £1 billion for the first time – this is a good moment to consider what more these huge organisations with their huge surpluses (and … Continue reading

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Another inglorious failure

It’s not that we like being proved right, especially when things in housing are so dire, but the Financial Times’ analysis of the Government’s New Homes Bonus leads us automatically into ‘we told you so’ territory. Mind you, analysis of … Continue reading

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