Political Parties Focus On Housing To Win Election

Political Parties Focus On Housing To Win Election

Political Housing Policies Could Have A
Major Impact On Landlords

The May 2015 General Election could have a major impact on the UK’s private rental sector (PRS), with each political party promising something different for the reform of the UK housing market and the private rental sector.

Each political party has their own propaganda to attempt to influence voter sentiment ahead of the May 2015 General Election, but do they really have landlord and tenant interests at heart?

All political campaigning promises something different for home owners and landlords with some political parties focussing on real issues that could make a difference whilst others continue to apportion blame and responsibility on to local authorities and private rented sector landlords.Labour’s flawed political manifesto proposes to outlaw any fees paid by tenants, making landlords pay for everything and they also want to introduce other flawed policies such as rent caps and the introduction of mandatory long-term rental agreements for tenants in an attempt to win votes from the UK’s 9 Million renters.

Such political posturing could harm the property rental business forever, resulting in the contraction of the private rental sector (PRS) across the whole of the UK, ultimately making thousands of vulnerable PRS tenants homeless.

An independent report on the state of the UK PRS, entitled “Private Rented Sector 360 Degrees” was published last month by industry expert Kate Faulkner, which provided much needed in-depth analysis on the impact of the proposed housing polices put forward by campaigning political parties, and the conclusion was clear – it is not the UK’s private rental sector that needs remedying, it is the lack of supply of social and affordable homes that is the problem.

The report was supported by leading members of the UK property industry including the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA), The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), The Property Ombudsman, (TPO), The British Property Federation (BPF), as well as national estate and letting agent chains Belvoir, Chestertons, Concentric Lettings, Countrywide, Leaders, Knight Frank, Savills and Your Move.

Below is a table* of general election promises made by the political parties in campaign propaganda so far:

 

Conservatives Labour Liberal Democrats UKIP Green Party
Political Promises Made

“Buying A Home Shouldn’t Be An Impossible Dream”

“Housing Will Be A Top Priority”

“Providing The Opportunities For Everybody That A Home Gives”

“Vote Purple, Keep Britain Green”

“Providing Secure, Comfortable And Affordable Places To Live”

Annual House Building Target

Local Councils Should Determine Own House Building Targets.

200,000

300,000

200,000

Let Local Authorities Determine

Affordable Homes Target

Aim To Build 275,000 Affordable Homes By 2020

No Promises Made Yet

No Promises Made Yet

No Promises Made Yet

500,000 Social Rented (Affordable) Homes By 2025

Other Housing Targets

100,000 Homes With 20% Discount For First Time Buyers Under The Age Of 40

Double Numbers Of First Time Buyers By 2025

More Shared Ownership, Rent-To-Buy

Commissioning New Housing Direct From Government

1 Million Homes On Brownfield By 2025

No Promises Made Yet

Help To Buy

Will Extend Equity Loan To 2020 For Help To Buy

No Promises Made Yet

No Promises Made Yet

No Promises Made Yet

No Promises Made Yet

Planning

Continue Current Policies With Further Support And Rollout Of Neighbourhood Planning

Speed Up Planning For More Than 10 Unit Schemes.

Local Authorities (LA) Use Land As Equity Rather Than Selling

Review Scheme Local Authorities To Identify 15 Years Housing Supply

End Scheme

Cut Cost Of Applications By Merging Planning And Building Control Depts.

Constrain Power Of National Planning Inspectorate. Councils To Have More Proactive Role

Garden Cities

Yes, Where Locally Supported

Yes And Garden Suburbs

Yes

Yes, But Not On Greenbelt

No Promises Made Yet

Private Rental Sector

Complete Delivery Of 10,000 Homes Below Market Rent

Ban Letting Agents Fees To Tenants – Landlords To Pay For Everything

Introduce A National Register Of Landlords

Encourage More Landlords To Rent To Tenants On Housing Benefits

Compulsory Licensing For All Landlords. Ban Letting Agent Fees To Tenants- Landlords To Pay For Everything

Rent Cap

No

Market Rent Followed By Ceiling On Rent Increases Over 3 Yr Tenancies

No Promises Made Yet

No

Cap Rent Rises To Inflation Initially. Living Rent Commission To Examine More Stringent Proposals

Length Of Tenancy

Continue Support For Voluntary Model Tenancies

3 Years Will Be Default

No Promises Made Yet

New 3-10 Year Tenancies As Well As Assured Short Hold Tenancies

5 Years With The Tenant’s Right To Renew Unless The Landlord Sells Or Moves In

Development Land Tax

No

No Promises Made Yet

Pilot For Local Authorities To Capture Value Uplift

No

Yes

Mansion Tax

No

Yes

Yes

No

Would Support, Prefer Land Value Tax

New Council Tax Bands

No

No

No Promises Made Yet

No

Yes

Empty Homes

Continue Current Policies To Reduce Empty Homes

Double Council Tax For Properties Empty For More Than 1 Year

No Promises Made Yet

Double Council Tax For Properties Empty For 5 Years. Council Tax Waiver For Landlords Bringing Empty Homes Into Use

More Robust Council Powers E.G Punitive Council Tax Levels

* Information supplied by Belvoir

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