It has been suggested that the easy solution to the shortage of houses is to build more houses, now I’m not involved in town planning but this solution seems to be a tad simplistic to me.
There seems to be conflicting evidence where the shortage of houses are concerned as I can’t see much point in building swathes of new housing if no-one can afford to buy the things.
Apparently it takes the average Londoner 14.5 times their annual salary to buy a home which means they haven’t a hope in hell of buying a house, unless of course they forgo their expensive foreign holidays, new lease cars every year, meals out on a regular basis, and expensive electrical equipment, new computers, wide screen televisions and the like.
Rather interestingly when the Queen was born in 1926 the average house in Britain cost £619 whereas today it is just above £290,000 which doesn’t seem that expensive.
Surprisingly a pint of milk would have cost the equivalent of 1.3p in 1926 which had it risen in line with property prices would now cost £612.57 which would make a cup of tea quite an expensive beverage, although like most MP’s, I personally couldn’t tell you what the price of a pint of milk is to save my life.
It has been predicted that if house prices rise at the rate of 6.7% which has been the average over the last 23 years, that on Prince Charles 90th birthday in 2038 the average house will cost nearly £1.3 million.
Assuming this to be the case it will be rather like the days before World War Two in Germany where money had reached such a worthless figure that you had to cart it around in a wheelbarrow to have enough to buy a loaf of bread.
Now to the point of my blog which relates to countryside matters, there is a new development of houses some two or three miles from where we live that has just started and I have to admit to being a little bit of a NIMBY where this development is concerned.
I was somewhat surprised to find the development has been given planning permission on farm land and was for some one thousand two hundred houses which is bigger than the two villages between us and the new houses.
Building work has started and they have erected traffic lights on the quiet country road causing considerable hold ups already,Lord knows what it will be like when it gets properly into it’s stride.
One of the great joys I found upon moving to the countryside was the ability to get around at what seemed like the speed of light compared to the town from which I came and already I can see this ebbing away, I’m not happy!
I seem to have become more of a country person than I realised, although it’s too late to get out with a placard declaring I do not want this in my back yard.
The only saving grace is the fact that these houses will help to swell the housing stock to such an extent that they will be virtually giving them away which means all our children will be able to purchase houses which will be worth millions in the not too distant future.
Oh, and the other plus must be the precedent set by this development on farm land, as my wife just happens to own a farm where our daughter keeps her horses and I’m wondering how many houses can you get on the piece not used by the horses, after all the farm is sufficiently far away for it to be, not in my back yard!