CML publishes election manifesto

The Council of Mortgage Lenders has set out what actions policymakers must take to deliver a more efficient housing market, ahead of next year’s general election.

The trade body’s “election manifesto”, published today, looks at home ownership, private renting and social renting from the point of view of different age groups.

It argues the main issue affecting young home owners and potential buyers is the cost of housing. The CML says policymakers must address the housing supply shortages that have contributed to rapid price increases, as well as reform the current slab structured stamp duty tax.

Policymakers are also urged to promote better “pathways” between mainstream mortgages, lifetime mortgages and downsizing, as older borrowers continue to struggle with the competing considerations of income, releasing housing wealth and paying for care in later life.

Finally, the trade body says borrowers continue to struggle to achieve home ownership and financial security. Furthermore, those who do manage to buy a home are increasingly finding it difficult to move up the property ladder.

To address this situation, the CML says policymakers must ensure regulatory changes do not unintentionally restrict mortgage accessibility for credit-worthy mortgage borrowers. The trade body also says politicians must engage with industry members to develop an effective safety net against the risk of changes to household circumstances.

CML director general Paul Smee says: “There are many things that the mortgage industry can and will do to promote a healthy housing market. But it is also crucial to have strategic public policy for housing that is clear, deliverable, and long-term.

“We hope our thoughts will help to stimulate political thinking about practical ways to deliver the right types of housing, supported by the necessary finance, in the right locations – this is the only sustainable and permanent solution to housing affordability.”