In these days when fake news has gained notoriety, it is often assumed that the purveyors of fake news are either supporters of Donald Trump, or various right wing news sites.
The reality is that fake news is quite common as the following quote shows.
What is undoubtably a problem – the lack of security in the private rented sector is turned into supporting more house building. It was not a housing shortage that caused Mark and Angela a problem it was the insecurity in the private sector. In Cornwall, an added problem is that it is more profitable to rent out housing for holiday use than for residential use!
Before Mark and Angela moved into their new home, they rented privately in Cornwall. In the space of 11 years, they were forced to move nine times. That would be shocking on its own, but when you factor in the couple’s four children, the scale of the disruption starts to look tragic. They are just one of the families that have been hit by the shortage of homes across England. A shortage which, according to our joint piece of research with Crisis, has now topped four million homes.
So the question remains – what can we do to address this? Well, on one level, the answer is clear: build more homes. But how many will make a dent, helping to provide homes for people like Mark and Angela? Most calculations of how many homes we need to build are based on what we expect the population to look in the future. It’s a calculation that weighs up how many ‘extra’ people will need a home that doesn’t already exist.
But if we only look at future demand, we won’t have any impact on this pre-existing backlog: things wouldn’t get any worse, but nor would they actually get any better. We would, in effect, be treading water. This is why we have also calculated how many homes we would need to build to meet both future need and this existing backlog: around 340,000 homes every year for the next 15 years.