Building more homes 'will do very little to address fundamental housing market problem'

A claim that building more homes 'will do very little to address the fundamental problem in the housing market' features in today's newspaper round-up.

Financial Times (subscription) columnist Kate Allen says that a new book challenges the commonly held view that the Britain needs to build more homes to solve the housing crisis. "In reality, councils - or anyone else for that matter - building more homes will do very little to address the fundamental problem in the housing market", Allen writes. The book - Why Can’t You Afford To Buy A Home? by Josh Ryan-Collins, a researcher at University College London’s Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose - argues that the housing crisis "needs to be understood primarily as a product of the banking system", Allen writes.

The FT also reports that "British banks are cutting lending to UK construction companies at the most sustained rate for seven years, highlighting the pressure on the sector as uncertainty around Brexit creates fears of a downturn". The paper says that "outstanding loans to construction and civil engineering businesses contracted in each of the six months to August, the most recent period for which data are available, according to the Bank of England. That marks the longest run of declines since the first half of 2011."

Writing in The Telegraph, the Conservative mayor for the West Midlands, Andy Street, outlines a series of measures to revive the high street. He writes: "A modern and successful high street has to be different – to offer an experience that you can’t get from a screen. We remain social beings, and a remodelled high street can be what puts us back into more regular contact with our neighbours. The solution is not purely one for retailers to sort out. It must involve governments, landlords, the hospitality industry and consumers alike. And it demands a rethink about the composition of our towns and cities."

The Independent reports that "government advisers have been tasked with setting out a strategy to virtually eliminate carbon emissions within 30 years, following a warning that ‘unprecedented’ action is needed to tackle climate change". The paper says that the Committee on Climate Change "will establish whether the UK needs to completely overhaul its current emissions targets, and what needs to be done to achieve this transition".

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