London needs radical action to tackle the housing crisis
12 Aug 2015Housing is not just about four walls. Housing is about public health, communities and families. We all know that London housing market isn’t a functioning market, and market remedies alone will not solve this crisis. Currently to buy a house in London you need an income of £77,000 a year. Many of our young people are spending more than half their income on rent. And there are many young people leaving London because they simply cannot afford to rent or buy. So first of all we need rent control. Not rent stabilisation, but rent control. That is the only thing that will make London liveable for young people, and make it conceivable for people to save and at a later date move on, or buy their own home.
London needs a Mayor that will clearly advocate for social housing, not just affordable housing, which according to Boris’ is 80% of the market rate. We also need to see a renaissance of social housing. Well-built council housing that will provide jobs and regenerate communities. And we need to put an end to right to buy. One third of the properties bought under right to buy end up being rented to the same local authorities at an inflated rate. Its latest incarnation, right to buy for housing association tenants was a clear bribe by the Tory government before the last general election – a bribe with assets that the government do not own.
We also need a serious attempt to reign in Landlords through licensing and proper enforcement. This will help drive out some of the worst landlords in our city who increasingly put Londoners in terrible living conditions.
London needs radical action to solve its housing crisis and I will be the Labour Mayor to deliver.