Originally posted for Inside Housing on February 13.
When you’re used to seeing things up close sometimes it makes sense to take a step back and look at the bigger picture.
Just such a macro look at housing comes in the latest episode of one of my favourite podcasts.
This week’s episode of Talking Politics is about what it calls ‘the fundamentals’, the factors that influence the politics of voters’ everyday that seem to outside the control of the politicians
The discussion starts with two propositions that are startling not just in themselves but also because they come from Cambridge academics who are more used to talking about Brexit and Trump than housing affordability and housebuilding.
The first is that housing is more politically important to the government than the NHS. Following on from that, the second is that if Jeremy Corbyn wins the next election housing will be the main reason why.
Originally posted as a column for Inside Housing on November 29.
What happens to the huge wealth generated by soaring house prices is a crucial issue not just for housing but also for the future of Britain.
The Office for National Statistics puts the value of unmortgaged housing equity at just under £4 trillion and second only to pension wealth of £4.5 trillion in total personal wealth of £11.1 trillion.
Savills estimates unmortgaged equity at over £5 trillion and says housing is now the single biggest source of wealth in the country and a report today by the Halifax says the total value of the UK housing stock has passed £6 trillion for the first time.
Whatever the number you put in front of those 12 zeros that is a serious amount of money- the UK’s national debt is currently worth £1.8 trillion.
As by far the most visible divide between baby boomers like me lucky enough to have been born and buy houses at the right time and millennials born at the wrong time and stuck in the wrong housing tenure, housing dominated an event on wealth inequality that I went to in Bristol recently.