Thursday 19 October 2017

The Ryan Review

Sinead Ryan

Sinead Ryan

The Ryan Review

Okay, so you're a government with a housing crisis. There are 90,000 on the waiting list for social housing; private rents are rising out of proportion and affordability, as are house prices in the cities where people want to live.

Banks aren't lending despite you giving them billions of bailout money to do so. What to do?

Well, let's start with what NOT to do:

* Leave the banks alone. They're good chaps stuck between a rock and a hard place. Bless.

* Offer to guarantee 95pc loans to first-time buyers who have only managed to save up a tiny deposit. It's a grand reward for bad savers and sure the taxpayer will indemnify it, because that worked so well in the past.

* Extend the Capital Gains tax break for big developers – sure they're only trying to make a buck, the poor sods. What harm if they hang onto apartment blocks for seven years before selling them to needy people?

* Keep all taxes, levies and development charges as high as possible. 40pc of the cost of every new house goes to government – fabulous. Win-win really for the exchequer.

* Don't listen to economists who say you're only dealing with demand issues and ignoring the supply side. What do they know? Economic theory of Supply and Demand is just that, isn't it? A theory.

* Finally, do watch house prices inflate, but have your spin doctors working on press releases confirming it's definitely not going to inflate house prices. No, Siree.

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