March 14, 2016

BEING A DESTINATION...:

DON'T CRY FOR GENERATION RENT : The solution to poor-me millennials' plight is simple - build more houses. (JAMES DAWSON, 10 MARCH 2016, spiked)

There are problems with housing in London. There is a chronic lack of social and affordable housing, and statistics show the number of private renters is now higher than that of mortgaged buyers. But by focusing on young people and painting them as the primary victims of the housing crisis, commentators and politicians alike strip today's young adults of their agency. This focus on young people as victims ignores the fact that many are choosing to move to London because it still contains opportunities unavailable outside of the capital. Yes, given the difference in living costs and rent prices compared with the rest of the UK, the move to London is a gamble, but it's one that adaptable and mobile adults are better equipped to make while they are young.

It is the shortfall in new houses being built that is driving rents up. Rather than feeling sorry for millennials - or proposing a rent cap, as is often suggested by some on the left - policymakers need to scrap draconian planning laws, and allow councils and private firms alike to build more houses.

Young people have always struggled at the start of their careers, when wages are low. It's an experience pretty much everyone becoming an independent adult goes through. If millions more homes were available to rent and buy, there would be no need to worry about, or talk about, 'Generation Rent'. The answer to young people's woes is simple: build more houses.

...the whole Anglosphere faces increasingly dire housing shortages.
Posted by at March 14, 2016 5:48 AM

  

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