Labour and Rent Controls

A glimmer of hope, as Sadiq Kahn, Labour's Shadow Minister for London argues for rent controls as part of Labour's Manifesto, at the Fabian Society New Year conference; he sparks a debate with powerful allies and opponents.

  1. Like hot cakes
    Like hot cakes
  2. On Friday, the Edinburgh Private Tenants Action Group tweets,
  3. Landlords and letting agents are profiteering simply because they can. This is why we need rent controls.
  4. A bit simplistic, an effective policy must cover all four tenures, privately owned and rented, affordable and social housing. The twitter storm as it is, is kicked off by Mark Ferguson reporting on Sadiq Kahn's speech to the Fabian Conference. It's his second contribution to the housing debate in three months as he authored the Housing chapter in the Fabians "Our London" which he also edited.
  5. Shadow London Minister @SadiqKhan comes out for rent caps at #fab14. Is that labour policy? Should be, but a bit off message from Sadiq
  6. Rafael Behr kicks the story along by pointing out that Diane Abbott also backs them.
  7. @Markfergusonuk Diane Abbott backed it on C4 news the other week - so sub-category of Lab (prospective London mayoral) policy?
  8. @rafaelbehr Diane never worries to much about being on script ;)
  9. And so Mark asks Emma Reynolds, Labour's Shadow Hosing spokesman and knocks up and article at Labour List, detailing the fact of Sadiq Kahn's speech and the popularity of the policy at the Fabians Conference where it won the "Dragon's Den" event
  10. who replies in the negative! Wonder if we have a Chloe Smith reprise here, although her predecessor Jack Dromey was always careful to set expectations low. Emma replies,
  11. To be clear Mark and others, it is not Labour party policy to introduce rent controls. @Markfergusonuk
  12. which brings the following replies,
  13. @EmmaReynoldsMP @Markfergusonuk it should be, most effective way of bringing down the HB bill and getting people into safe secure homes.
  14. RT @EmmaReynoldsMP: To be clear Mark & others, it is not Labour party policy to introduce rent controls. @Markfergusonuk < Shame!
  15. Mark updates the Labour List article,
  16. Update: Shadow Housing Minister @EmmaReynoldsMP says it's NOT Labour policy to introduce rent controls... 
  17. and makes his view clear
  18. .@EmmaReynoldsMP that’s a shame. If hand in hand with increased house building I think it’d be popular and right…
  19. Kevin McKeever, Labour's PPC for Northampton points at Krugman's 2000 article arguing that Rent Controls restrict supply and that uncontrolled rents rise.
  20. @steve_vr: Here's a Paul Krugman op-ed on rent controls. ” < interesting read. Increasing supply only real solution
  21. Krugman argues,  in 2000 that Rent Controls have massive undesirable side effects, such as although not mentioned in Krugman's article, controlled tenancies can be traded in undocumented or open markets. Krugman mentions the non market impacts of allocating rented housing although he is writing about the US where owner occupation is lower and the public sector has an historic lower involvement in housing supply, although we should examine how it works in the UK today. There' not a lot of house building being done by the public sector.

    McKeever points at Owen Jones' article in the Independent, which calls for lifting the Local Authority borrowing cap, and rent controls to enable the building of more houses
  22. Tom Copley AM makes the point that we don't have to copy the US, nor repeat our own history. Much of the so called investment is foreign money using London land as the world's newest reserve currency. This money is not increasing the amount of housing, it's merely inflating the cost. It can't be beyond us to develop a policy that keeps rents low, is fair to building owners, doesn't create unfair market evasions and ensures continued private sector investment in the housing supply.
  23. @kevinmckeever @OwenJones84 Regulated rents does not mean a return to old-style rent controls that existed pre-1989