Author Archives: monimbó

Converting offices into rabbit hutches is a bad idea

Five years ago Eric Pickles made one of the biggest blunders of his term as Secretary of State in charge of housing: he allowed offices to be converted into flats without any need to get planning permission. By classifying such … Continue reading

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When will the LGA say ‘enough is enough’?

Another statement from the Chancellor, another failure to recognise the looming crisis in local government spending. It’s less than a week since the National Audit Office issued its report on the financial state of local councils, which even the LGA … Continue reading

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Right to buy is not the biggest reason for the fall in social renting

Why did the number of homes let at social rents fall by 150,000 in the last five years? Surprisingly, although right to buy was a big factor, it wasn’t the biggest. From April 2012 until the same month in 2017, … Continue reading

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No new money will be made available for post-Grenfell works

“Fund it yourselves” was the clear message from communities secretary Sajid Javid to the Communities Select Committee and then again in response to an emergency question from John Healey last Thursday. Red Brick had already outlined the options available to … Continue reading

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Tories try to steal Labour clothes

Investing in council housing was just one of the new policies that Theresa May pinched from Labour in her disastrous speech. Tackling student debt, mental health, energy prices and even organ donations all figured in the list of stolen policies … Continue reading

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Where will the money come from for Labour’s housing plans?

Labour was under scrutiny at its conference last week for the announcement of supposedly costly policies that can only be funded by tax increases or extra borrowing. One such promise of course was to end PFI contracts, and it was … Continue reading

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Who will pay to reclad the tower blocks?

Media coverage of the Grenfell Tower fire has been dogged by confusion as to where the money came from for the original work and who will pay for the remedial work now needed to the country’s tower blocks. This is … Continue reading

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Ten good (housing) reasons for not voting Tory

The Tories have been a disaster for housing policy, pouring billions into trying – and failing – to prop up home ownership while neglecting the rented sector. Here’s why you should vote to keep them out of power on Thursday. … Continue reading

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Can Labour deliver 100,000 social homes annually within five years?

This was the headline promise from the leaked version of Labour’s manifesto. How feasible is it? Labour seems to have stepped back from a much more ambitious – arguably, far too ambitious – target of delivering 500,000 affordable homes over … Continue reading

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Hammond’s not for turning

We normally look in vain for more housing investment in a Tory Budget, and this one had no surprises. Hammond ignored housing and in so doing merely confirmed what we already knew: he’d already made an almost imperceptible shift away … Continue reading

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