It worsens the housing crisis – but there is a fix.
In his first move as housing secretary, Michael Gove is reportedly set to halt Boris Johnson’s contentious planning shake-up that critics fear will give more powers to developers. Labour, meanwhile, has pledged reforms of their own, including an attempt to redefine affordable housing. Clearly, both parties are making housing a priority ahead of the next general election.
There is a prevailing idea among politicians that the solution to the housing crisis is simple: build more houses. The assumption is that more houses will not only house more people, but also drive down house prices. It is the logic underpinning Johnson’s planning reforms and the promise he made to “scythe through red tape” in a bid to get more housing projects delivered faster.