The housing shortage in our cities, the North-South divide, and rising wealth inequality are three of the greatest challenges facing Britain today. Public debate has until now thought about these problems as separate issues. But addressing them requires understanding the connections between all three, and how political choices are deepening these inequalities.
As the housing crisis in Britain’s most prosperous cities has grown, so has the wealth of their homeowners. While local demand for housing is driven by the strength of the local economy, supply, in contrast, does not respond to demand or economic performance. The housing shortages caused by these planning failures push up house prices in growing cities. This drives housing equity growth for a few existing homeowners, fuels increasing housing costs for renters and first-time buyers, widens regional inequality, and destabilises the national economy and the financial system.
Author(s): Anthony Breach
Anthony works as part of the economics team for the Centre for Cities team, where he focuses on housing. He has also worked on research on commercial property in cities, services exports, productivity, and manufacturing. He also has a particular interest in lessons for UK cities from Japan and the countries of the former Soviet Union.
Anthony joined the Centre for Cities in April 2017. Before this he worked at the Fawcett Society as a Research Officer. Anthony has an MSc in Comparative Social Policy from the University of Oxford and a BA in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from the University of Oxford.”
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