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The biggest review into the housing market being launched
A review into the housing market has been launched, spearheaded by Pete Redfern, the chief executive of Britain’s third-biggest house builder Taylor Wimpey. The review, also being backed by John Healey MP, the UK shadow housing minister, aims to be an independent view into the housing market over the next 10 years.
This review will be the first of its kind since Dame Kate Barker, a business economist & former member of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee, reviewed the housing industry back in 2003.
The Redfern Review will take a hard look at the causes of the recent decline in home-ownership. Labour claims that home ownership in the UK is now at its lowest level for nearly three decades.
The review will specifically examine this apparent decline in home ownership throughout the UK and highlight the key problem areas fuelling the housing crisis, such as affordability for first-time buyers and housing supply and planning. The findings of this new housing review are expected to be at the core of Labour’s future housing policy.
Addressing delegates at Labour conference John Healey said
“Yet home ownership has fallen each and every year over the last five years. Now at the lowest level for nearly three decades. And for those under 35, it’s down by over a fifth. George Osborne was right to describe this decline in home ownership as a ‘tragedy’. But it’s happening on his watch. It’s part of his party’s five years of failure,” he added.
Pete Redfern is calling on George Osborne to “rein in” the Help to Buy Scheme. He showed concern that the government’s plan to build more than 200,000 discounted houses for first-time buyers could be in doubt because of confusion about how the scheme would work. He also believes that the Government’s target to build a million homes by 2020 is unachievable and quality will be compromised if the industry does try to meet it.
Mr Redfern was quoted as saying
“It’s not to knock party policy but to question and challenge, and to say ‘this is working really well’, or ‘this isn’t working well but may do in the future’. It’s pointless having the review if you’re not willing to challenge policy.”
He then went on to say
“I have an ambition for a healthy and sustainable housing market that will give current and future generations the opportunity to own their own home. The continued structural decline in home ownership presents a long-term social and economic challenge and necessitates a considered review. This is not about party politics, it affects us all.”
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