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Affordable or not?
WE CAN’T afford affordable homes If we could control market forces experts would have brought the current recession to an abrupt end. Given that we can’t tinker with one aspect of the economy without affecting another, why do our council leaders continue to poke their noses into the sphere of house building in this city?
The notion of ‘affordable homes’ is as noble and altruistic as the objectives of the original patrons of the Joseph Rowntree Trust. But it is also as shallow and unrealistic as the idea that the future of the property market lies in public ownership.
Loose talk of young people being ‘forced’ to rent properties is alarmist. The truth is that many of today’s youngsters have unrealistic expectations.
They need to do what many of us did years ago and work patiently towards the ownership of bricks and mortar later in life.
Surely it’s time to listen to experts such as Paul Cordock and Matthew Laverack, who have been telling us for some time now that unless we sweep away cheap housing targets in this city we will deter the private investment we need in the housing market to get it moving again.
Allan Charlesworth, Old Earswick, York.
• ONCE again Coun Tracey Simpson Laing presumes to know what we developers are thinking (Letters, September 1).
She claims developers believe that pepper-potting affordable houses does not devalue neighbouring homes. This is utterly ludicrous. Does she think we also believe in Father Christmas and the tooth fairy?
Furthermore, her reference to affordable housing legislation being brought in by a Conservative government in 1992 is erroneous.
She should know that legislation was aimed at providing 100 per cent affordable schemes in rural areas on exceptional sites where free market development would not normally be allowed.
The current set of blackmail demands which require private builders to hand over, at a loss, a portion of their product to a Registered Social Landlord, is entirely the brainchild of New Labour, which took over a thriving economy in 1997 but left it in tatters 13 years later.
I am indeed lobbying the coalition government to reverse those disastrous policies which have done so much damage to the building industry.
John Jones, Former housebuilder, Sand Hutton, York.