CML Conference: More houses are needed, says Cooper

Building more housing is the only way to expand home ownership in the long-term, says Yvette Cooper MP, minister of state for housing and planning.

In her speech Extending Home Ownership at the Council of Mortgage Lenders annual conference yesterday, Cooper reiterated the governments key aims of expanding home ownership through its shared equity scheme with Nationwide, HBOS and the Yorkshire, and by increasing the supply of housing to meet demand, set out in yesterdays Pre-Budget Report.

However, she warned delegates that the gap between supply and demand in the housing market was unsustainable and would lead to a third of 30 year olds being priced off the property ladder by 2026. Building more properties, she says, is the only long-term solution.

To do this requires investment in infrastructure and planning reforms to ensure the communities created are places where people want to live. However, John Steward, director of economic affairs of Home Builders Federation, says government intervention does not take sufficient account of market demand, and the issue

but builders won’t build what they can’t sell.