Lets have some honesty

allsoppYesterday on Radio 4 ‘You and Yours’ presented by Louise Minchin focused on the housing shortage, triggered by the news earlier in the day that home ownership was at a 30 year low. Towards the end of the programme Louise introduced an expert to add her voice to those of the callers and words from social media. Kirstie Allsopp along with Phil Spencer has hosted a series of programmes on property searches including several in which people wished to buy a second home in the country, whilst retaining a town house. Although a second home for one or two people across the UK won’t change the supply of properties, when this approach is promoted through the power of TV, it has the potential to impact the whole nation and create an environment where owning second homes is a good way to utilise spare income. On You and Yours Kirstie was introduced and interviewed as though she is an expert, not as though she has played a  part in exacerbating the problem. It would have been unrealistic to assume that Louise Minchin would spend the whole time challenging Kirstie’s previous actions, but it would not have been unreasonable to assume that she could have pointed out that some of Kirstie’s programmes have fuelled the problem, rather than treating her as someone who could diagnose the issue from a neutral position. As Kirstie pointed out, solving the property crisis is a complex issue, although building new homes and finding a way to ensure they are sold or rented only to people who don’t own another home would be an excellent way forward. Using other means to make ownership of residential property by non residents less attractive would also release homes back into the market over time, although some investors who maintain empty homes, have very deep pockets.


About ianchisnall

I have a passion to see public policy made accessible everyone who want to improve the wellbeing of their communities. I am interested in issues related to crime and policing as well as in policies on health services and strategic planning.
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