The Economic Affairs Committee of the House of Lords, chaired by Lord Hollick, is conducting an inquiry into The Economics of the United Kingdom Housing Market. This inquiry will consider:
The Committee invites interested individuals and organisations to submit evidence to this inquiry.
Written evidence is sought by 17 December 2015. The written submissions will guide the Committee’s deliberations in oral evidence sessions and also inform the Committee’s final conclusions and recommendations.
Public hearings will be held between November 2015 and February 2016. The Committee aims to report to the House, with recommendations, in Spring 2016. The report will receive a response from the Government, and may be debated in the House.
The Committee would welcome written evidence on any or all of the issues set out below, or on any other relevant aspects of the UK housing market. Written evidence does not need to address every question. Whilst the questions are split by type of housing tenure, evidence that addresses the links between each category is welcomed. The questions are not listed in any particular order of importance.
The specific questions the inquiry will seek to address are:
1.Private Ownership: What measures can be taken to increase the supply of reasonably priced housing in the UK?
(a)Government schemes: How effective have Government schemes (such as Help to Buy, shared ownership and the right to acquire) been in improving the affordability of housing? Have these schemes exacerbated any lack of low cost housing? What will be the impact of the cessation of these schemes?
(b)Taxation: Are there tax measures that would improve housing supply and affordability?
(i)Will the proposed changes to inheritance tax due to come into effect in April 2017 have any impact on ‘downsizing’ or housing supply in general?
(ii)Has the 2014 reform of Stamp Duty Land Tax improved the affordability of houses for first time buyers? Should there be further reform to Stamp Duty?
(c)Mortgages: Has the introduction of the Mortgage Market Review changes in April 2014 restricted lending in particular to first time buyers? Should further changes be made to the rules?
(d)Planning: Are any further changes to the planning system necessary to increase the availability of low cost housing?
2.Privately Rented Accommodation: What measures can be taken to increase the supply of low cost private rental properties in the UK?
(a)Will the reduction of tax relief available to private landlords announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer in the 2015 Budget increase the cost of privately rented accommodation?
(b)Will the current trend of a decline in home ownership and an increase in private renting continue? How can the Government encourage a stable long-term rental culture?
(c)What are the advantages and disadvantages of restricting rent increases in the private sector?
3.Social housing: Are any measures needed to increase the supply of social housing?
(a)What will be the impact of the Right to Buy for housing association tenants?
(b)What will be the impact of the proposed changes to social housing rents announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer in the 2015 budget? Are any additional or alternate changes to social housing rents needed?
3 November 2015