The Government’s housing minister is changing around 20 times faster than the average home mover, who moves house once every 19 years, according to the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association (IMLA).
Its white paper, The New ‘Normal’ – Prospects for 2017: Is the March Back to a Sustainable Market on Track?, found that the average homeowner now moves house once every 19 years, up from every 13 years in 2006.
In comparison, Reading West MP Alok Sharma’s appointment as the new Housing Minister yesterday means that responsibility for housing in Westminster has now changed hands six times since 2010 – from John Healey to Grant Shapps to Mark Prisk to Kris Hopkins to Brandon Lewis to Gavin Barwell to Alok Sharma.
This makes Sharma the 14th person to take on this brief since 2000.
These constant changes mean that responsibility for housing within Westminster is changing hands almost 20 times faster than the average home.
The Executive Director of the IMLA, Peter Williams, comments: “Events of the last week have clearly left a lot of issues on the agenda for the Government to tackle – and certainly more than it would have hoped for when Theresa May first moved to call a snap election.
“However, the chronic shortage of housebuilding and the need for a joined-up policy across all housing tenures are recurring challenges that have faced every new housing minister and administration for longer than most people care to remember.”
He adds: “With talk turning to the need for cross-party agreement and a common approach to negotiating Brexit, it would surely make sense to adopt a similar, consensual, non-partisan approach to determining housing policy to put the UK property market on a more stable footing for the long term.”
The Chairman of the Residential Landlords Association (RLA), Alan Ward, also says: “We welcome the new Minster to what is a crucial role in Government and look forward to working with him.
“As he gets to work, we urge him to reflect positively on the contribution that the private rented sector and the majority of landlords who are individuals or small businesses can make to tackling the housing crisis.
“Through better enforcement of regulations to root out criminal landlords, pro-growth taxation, and a planning system that frees up small plots of unused public sector land for new homes, we can ensure that the sector meets the needs of those who rely on the sector for a place to live.”