Shortage of brickies is the problem!

Shortage of brickies is the problem!

11:50 AM, 21st August 2019, About 3 years ago

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The Children’s Commissioner for England reports that over 200,000 Children are Homeless and presumably one or both parents.

The only answer us to build more houses and quickly! However, Developers report an acute shortage of construction workers. The planning process has rapidly speeded up, but the Developers cannot find sufficient staff to build the houses at the rate they need to be built.

How do you recruit sufficient staff? Well if you import them from Europe they may not wish to come in view of Brexit, but even so they themselves will need to be housed adding to the housing shortage. You go around in circles.

At the moment there are about 6 children born for every new house built. So in 20 year’s time where do those children live? As to the present where do the homeless people live and what role does the Private Sector Landlord play? It makes no difference to overall numbers whether homes are owner occupied or rented. It is still the same number of homes.

However, if the Private Sector landlord rents out one house it reduces the shortage by one home. The average Private Sector landlord owns just one house (or flat) and it is difficult to see just how he is going to contribute too much.

If HMG does away with the Section 21 then it will mean a further exodus of Private Sector Landlords and a reduction in Private Sector Investment at a time when current thinking is that in, the overall picture, HMG needs Private Sector Money to reduce the Housing Shortage.

To do away with the Assured Shorthold Tenancy and replace with the Assured Tenancy is to go back thirty years to the Housing Act 1988!

Why were the Assured Shorthold Tenancies introduced? Specifically, because Investors would not invest in Assured Tenancies.

There is a short memory! I can understand tenants under 45 years have absolutely no understanding of the reasoning behind the introduction of Assured Shorthold Tenancies. We need to learn the lessons of the past.

We have a worse housing situation now than we had after the War! Not many children were born during the War and numbers came after the war with the baby boom. The Atlee Government of the day set about a massive house building programme and I recall moving into one of the houses, in the Thames Basin, at age 4 years, then under the last Churchill Government.

A few months later there followed the floods of 1953 and even at that young age I recall people saying why did they build houses in that position? I always think of this when we have flooding in Kent, and I see the flooding elsewhere in the Country. As an Investor I have always felt that the best thing is to ensure I did not invest in areas which are a flood risk.

In Kent we have maps produced by various authorities showing the 100-year flood plain. No Planning Approval should be given to a house within the flood plain. However, we have had in Kent three 100-year floods in just 13 years! That is the years 2000, 2012 and 2013. After the year 2000, where ever I went to purchase off-plan I went armed with the 100-year flood map to ensure I would not invest in such an area.

But then I need not have worried! The Planners simply would not approve developments in the 100-year flood plain.

If you are buying older-houses make sure you are going to keep your feet dry!

Fergus Wilson


The only way to solve the housing problem is to build lots of houses and quickly! The word quickly is the difficulty not planning any longer!

The delivery of these houses needs to be addressed but so does the viability as an investment if we are to have assured tenancies replacing assured shorthold tenancies.

The only way to produce the houses in the numbers required is by off-plan new developments.

Boris needs to speed the process up somehow!

He needs to also address the role of the Private Sector Landlord!

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