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Osborne urged to hold fire on landlords

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The Chancellor should use Budget to launch a root and branch review of the UK housing market, says lender
Osborne urged to hold fire on landlords

Buy-to-let lender Paragon has called on the Chancellor not to make further changes to tax on landlords ahead of tomorrow’s Budget. And it urges Osborne to instead deliver a full housing strategy.

Paragon said that the Chancellor should instigate a root and branch review of the UK’s housing requirements to deliver a comprehensive strategy to meet the housing needs of the country’s growing population.

The UK’s population is forecast to grow from 64.6m in 2014 to 74.3m in 2039.  With limited housebuilding, reduced investment in social housing and a round of tax increases planned for landlords operating in the private rented sector (PRS), there is little prospect that quality, affordable housing will be available for all without co-ordinated action by the Government.

Bigger picture

The lender aruges that Government incentives to encourage homeownership are set against a backdrop of reduced investment for local authority housing provision, less support for housing associations through a revival of the ‘right to buy’ and a complex layering of tax increases and policy changes for landlords.

And it says that any slowdown in the expansion in supply of privately rented housing will put pressure on rents and household budgets.

Paragon Group chief executive, Nigel Terrington said: “The Government needs to instigate a thorough review of UK housing need in the context of the expected population growth. The size of forecast population growth is the equivalent of nine cities the size of Birmingham.

“The private rented sector is an important provider of homes for people in the UK. For many years, successive Governments have actively reduced the provision of social housing. This, together with other regulatory changes which have restricted mortgage credit to homebuyers, mean more people are turning to the rented sector.

“In the context of forecast population growth, together with a current and projected housing shortage, the key requirement is for the Government to create a stable policy framework that will encourage investment in the supply of good quality, affordable housing across all tenures, so that people can choose the best housing option to suit their lifestyle.”

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