Hot topic: Housing, BBC Spotlight
Housing is a hot topic again as it was revealed just over seven and a half thousand new private homes were built in the South West last year compared to just 170 new council houses.
The figures have come from the charity Shelter.
One issue for all the political parties in the election is that many people are paying high rents and can’t afford a deposit for a mortgage.
Claire Baker from Devon has been trying to save a deposit to buy for ten years but can’t.
“We can afford a mortgage but can’t get the mortgage… It makes me really angry,” she said.
This sort of ‘news’ is presumably an attempt by the local BBC to make a contribution to what they perceive to be of interest to the electorate.
The trouble is it’s factually incorrect – for the year 2016-17 the net additions to housing stock for SW England (and Cornwall) totalled 17,850*!
Secondly, it conflates affordability and housing supply. There are various reasons why people cannot afford housing, including the dismal situation for earnings growth.
And no awareness of the wider context – population growth; demand for second/holiday homes etc.
Presumably the person who came up with the ‘news’ has no understanding of housing issues!
[*DCLG, Table 122 Housing Supply; net additional dwellings,1 by local authority district, England: 2001-02 to 2015-16]