In essence, the idea is positive but, in practice, it’s not currently feasible.
Take for example the government’s plan to allow people on housing benefits to use welfare payments towards a mortgage. Welfare payments stop when a person’s personal savings exceed £16,000 – a mere fraction of what’s now needed for a house deposit in the UK.
On top of the fact homeownership is still unattainable for many – even with help from the government – we should be asking the question: why do homeownership policies trump affordable housing ones?
Owning your own home provides people with an asset, leading to a sense of financial security, but helping people become homeowners shouldn’t be the only priority or route to a long-term secure home.
We’re in a cost-of-living crisis and a housing crisis – inflation is at an all-time high. We should be focusing efforts on helping the poorest people in society and ensuring they have access to safe, secure, and affordable housing.
Isn’t it time to refocus attention on delivering affordable homes to the people that need them?