We have discussed the meaningless use of ‘affordable’ so we will not repeat that here. We are more concerned about what is holding back the building of much needed homes.
This has been brought into focus because the National Housing Federation has found that Taxpayers’ money is being wasted on “propping up rents” and lining the pockets of private landlords. Housing benefit rose from £16.6bn in the mid-1990s to £25.1bn in 2015-16.
It also found that since 2011, no government money has been made available to build homes in England for low paid people to rent.
The chief executive of NHF, David Orr, said this was “poor value for the taxpayer” and had “a knock-on effect, with everyone struggling to rent or buy”.
“We know we need more, better quality social housing. And yet, rather than putting public money into building the homes we need, we are propping up rents in a failing market.”
So what could be holding back the investment in housing that the country so desperately needs? Well here’s an interesting fact uncovered by FactCheck. The analysis by FactCheck shows that 123 MPs earn extra money by renting out homes and private property. Landlord MPs account for almost a fifth of all MPs.
Their properties include houses, flats, farms, holiday cottages and shops. The MPs include Chancellor Philip Hammond, foreign secretary Boris Johnson, the shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry, and the Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow.
Now it is entirely possible that there are MORE MPs who are landlords because the only ‘check’ on it is their ‘honesty’. You couldn’t make it up! Just to cover their tracks, if they do get spotted it is not illegal for an MP to not declare a financial interest! Priceless.
You don’t think that some of them might just vote out of self-interest? No!!! Of course not!! How could you even think it??
Some familiar names of MPs who have declared rental income:
Philip Davies (Shipley) – Conservative
Richard Drax (South Dorset) – Conservative
Dr Liam Fox (North Somerset) – Conservative
James Gray (North Wiltshire) – Conservative
Chris Grayling (Epsom and Ewell) – Conservative
Dominic Grieve (Beaconsfield) – Conservative
Philip Hammond (Runnymede and Weybridge) – Conservative
Jeremy Hunt (South West Surrey) – Conservative
Sajid Javid (Bromsgrove) – Conservative
Boris Johnson (Uxbridge and South Ruislip) – Conservative
Sir Oliver Letwin (West Dorset) – Conservative
Brandon Lewis (Great Yarmouth) – Conservative
Owen Paterson (North Shropshire) – Conservative
Claire Perry (Devizes) – Conservative
Jacob Rees-Mogg (North East Somerset) – Conservative
Anna Soubry (Broxtowe) – Conservative
Theresa Villiers (Chipping Barnet) – Conservative
John Whittingdale (Maldon) – Conservative
Nadhim Zahawi (Stratford-on-Avon) – Conservative