Houses for whom?

News items about housing numbers and housing targets, with the exception of references to ‘affordables’ ,treat housing as one if it is a single, undifferentiated whole, that one property is in general indistinguishable from another.  The simple act of building each new property adds to the total sum of housing supply which is available to meet housing need.  More houses built mean there are more opportunities for people who need houses.   It sounds brilliant in principle, so simplistically simple and obvious, that nobody could question the motive of building more houses.   It is as if something magical occurs a house is built and the housing fairy is on hand to make sure someone in need gets to move in.

But in the real world things don’t work out like that.   One reason is that when new (and old) houses come onto the market they can be purchased by anyone.  That might appear obvious but again it’s not that simple.  Developers don’t just build houses in the hope of selling them.  They build houses they know they can sell, they identify a market and make sure that the houses are marketed to maximise their potential.

So houses are built for a specific purpose.  We have for example:

 29 executive homes are being constructed in Bodmin within the private secluded grounds of three Grade II and II* listed buildings.  (Westheath Park at Bodmin).

A pocket of luxury built in the market town of St Columb.  (Jenner Parc, St Columb).#

Great people have written great things about the Penwith peninsula – which has an undeniable character of its own, away from it all in the far west of a county that is itself a world away from the mainstream bustle of modern life.  At the heart of this “great escape” lies the picturesque and largely unspoilt historic village of St Buryan.  (Lefra Orchard, St Buryan).

award-winning Devington Homes has created a niche market for discerning buyers.    With over a quarter-century’s expertise in the creation of luxury homes.   (Devington Hall, Truro; Devington Court Falmouth).

The Pearl development Newquay is a collection of luxury apartments on Fistral beach.  These limited edition, 2 and 3 bedroom apartments  are the new landmark development for Newquay.   The building has been designed to be the ‘jewel in the crown’ on Headland Road; for it, indeed, houses the finest luxury apartments on Fistral beach. 

These are all developments specifically designed for the luxury market, for those ‘discerning buyers’ seeking to get away from the bustle of modern life.  There is no mention of meeting local need, phrases like ‘ideal for local households wishing to stay in area’,  or ‘in need of a house, so you can stay in your neighbourhood, here it is.’

They are all unaffordable and unattainable, each one helps to meet the housing target but can never help towards meeting housing need.


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