Policy Exchange recommended selling expensive council homes to build new homes. In Southwark, the council is already doing this to raise money for refurbishment. Picture: Getty.

Why a Labour council is selling expensive housing stock

22 August 2012 13:00

The Policy Exchange report Ending Expensive Social Tenancies has predictably provoked a renewed debate about council housing and the value of genuinely mixed communities. It was welcomed by the right… Continue reading

London Luxury Homes As Property Becomes Haven

There’s no right to live in Chelsea

20 August 2012 19:08

Your local council owns prime real estate and could sell it to build new social houses. Housing Minister Grant Shapps says the appeal of this idea promoted by Policy Exchange… Continue reading


Cameron’s sub-prime thinking

12 March 2012 15:06

You’d think the American sub-prime crisis would have taught politicians the world over not to try to rig the housing market. But no, David Cameron is back on it today… Continue reading


Property Roulette: The Government’s Pursues a Losing Strategy

12 March 2012 13:19

If you ever needed reminding that government is a series of swings and roundabouts ensuring that what you gain on one you lose on the other, consider the coalition’s plans… Continue reading


The government’s housing policies don’t match its strong rhetoric

22 November 2011 15:55

Yesterday’s housing strategy offered a mortgage guarantee for first-time buyers of new properties, one of the few new announcements in a document largely consisting of re-hashed policy. At best, the… Continue reading


There’s merit in the Coalition’s housing proposals

21 November 2011 18:55

The government’s announcement on housing today is an attempt to square the circle. On the one hand, a return to excessive lending and sub-prime mortgages is clearly not a good… Continue reading


Trust in bricks and mortar

17 October 2011 14:11

If George Osborne is serious about growth, a relatively easy decision awaits him: to stimulate the economy by spending more on housebuilding. David Cameron knows there’s a problem, and during… Continue reading


Shapps sharpens the Right to Buy

2 October 2011 14:01

It’s a day for growth initiatives. In addition to those described earlier, George Osborne has announced that Whitehall’s annual underspend will be reinvested into capital spending projects. The emphasis on… Continue reading


Why mansion tax makes sense

20 September 2011 17:25

Messy deals and fudged compromises: an inevitable feature of coalition politics. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that the resulting policy will always be bad. As a result of grubby negotiations in Downing… Continue reading


Another voice: Dale Farm reprieved

19 September 2011 18:42

This is the second of our occasional ‘another voice’ series. Siobhan Courtney reports again from Dale Farm. The outcome was not what anyone expected: the bailiffs are not getting into… Continue reading


The right to own is not all right

18 September 2011 15:20

There was much to commend in Chris Skidmore’s article in the Telegraph earlier this week, calling for a radical approach to public services. But there’s one bit that’s worth dissecting:… Continue reading


Clegg biography claims the Lib Dems want a new coalition agreement

17 September 2011 0:22

Lib Dem conference this year brings with it the serialisation of Jasper Gerard’s biography of Nick Clegg. The focus will be on the claims that deputy Prime Minister has promised… Continue reading


A reminder of two of the political battles ahead for the coalition

11 September 2011 23:41

If anyone had any doubts about how difficult the politics of banking reform and planning would be for the Conservatives, they’ll be dispelled by a glance at a couple of… Continue reading


There’ll be no u-turn on planning

3 September 2011 12:59

This government has developed rather a reputation for u-turning. But I would be extremely surprised if it did one over its planning reforms. When you talk to ministers and advisers… Continue reading


The dangers of home ownership

30 August 2011 11:58

The slump in home ownership is reported today as a bad thing. Many Conservatives, who believe that home ownership releases what the late Shirley Letwin called "vigorous virtues", may agree.… Continue reading


Housing crisis on the horizon

30 August 2011 9:01

There is grim news on the housing front this morning: the National Housing Federation (NHF) reports that the housing market will descend into “crisis” unless the supply of houses is… Continue reading


Boris’s last chance to show imagination

27 August 2011 15:10

Back in 2008, one Mayoral candidate explained that it would require imagination to solve London’s housing problems. The candidate developed a manifesto that suggested a new form of “democratic” home… Continue reading


Texas Lessons for Glasgow and Liverpool

15 June 2011 13:28

Since Rick Perry’s campaign theme – assuming he runs – will be It Worked In Texas, it’s worth observing that Texas’s success in recent years is partly based upon the… Continue reading


Britain’s other, bigger debt problem

31 May 2011 11:16

And what about the other sort of debt? We spend so much time harrumphing about the national debt that an important point is obscured: personal debt, the amount owed by… Continue reading


Pickles takes it to the Lib Dems

14 April 2011 12:17

Vince Cable’s remarkable criticisms of David Cameron’s speech on immigration are dominating the news. But in the papers today there’s a development in another intra-coalition dispute, Eric Pickles hitting back… Continue reading


The politics of planning

5 March 2011 15:19

The ruckus over sending a high-speed railway roaring through some of Southern England’s most prized back gardens might be dominating the headlines. But another, separate row over planning is brewing.… Continue reading


The pressing need to redefine poverty

25 January 2011 9:00

What is ‘poverty’? It might sound a basic question but, when we hear about x percent of people ‘living in poverty’, what does that actually mean? The policy review conducted… Continue reading


There is a lot more to immigration than simply totting up the net migration figures

19 January 2011 10:30

The good news is that most people in Britain think that people in their local area mix pretty well  regardless of differences in race, religion and the rest of it.… Continue reading


MPs turn on PFI

18 January 2011 9:03

There is nothing like being wise after the event. The Public Accounts Committee has turned on the private finance initiative, saying there is ‘no clear evidence’ that PFI delivers more… Continue reading


Stable house prices won’t happen by themselves

5 January 2011 11:43

Grant Shapps has impressed in the housing brief, arguing that house prices rising faster than wages is not a good thing (with which Policy Exchange’s report, Making Housing Affordable, agreed).… Continue reading