Most people want to own their own home. Today it is too difficult for many young people to do so. How should this be tackled?
Some suggest renting is better, more flexible. They usually make these statements from their home which they own! Renting is meant to take the stress of home ownership away, as mending a fault or problem should be just a phone call away to the landlord. That’s fine if the landlord is attentive, but it can be far worse than getting on with sorting out your own fault if he or she does not co-operate speedily. Renting limits your ability to improve and change your home environment. It takes much of the pleasure of a place of your own away. Many Generation Renters can only afford to share rented premises with others, so it is not a true home of their own. If you rent throughout your earning years you will be paying even more rent when you retire. If you have bought a place of your own and repaid the mortgage before you give up work, costs in later life are lower and easier to pay for out of the pension.
So how can we give more people the choice of owning and the chance of buying? There are various policies the next government could adopt to help.
First we need control of our own borders, with a measured approach to migration. We are not building enough new homes to deal with all the demand resulting from demographic change, largely driven by migration.
Second, if the government reduced Stamp Duties buying a home would be cheaper, and more homes might come onto the market as people would be more willing to trade up or down.
Third, cutting CGT to an optimising rate, so more people with homes they do not need would be willing to take their profits.
Fourth, putting more emphasis on affordable homes for purchase, shared equity and other ways to make owning possible within the substantial budgets and programes of social housing
I would appreciate your thoughts on what else could be done to assist.