Politicians across the UK have been promising potential first-time buyers significant discounts, more properties to choose from and a reduction in stamp duty. We have seen promises that the next government will build as many as 600,000 properties over the term of the next Parliament. Indeed today the Labour Party went one step further suggesting rental controls as well as compulsory purchase options on unused development land. However, there are billions of pounds tied up in pension investments which are currently barred from the domestic property market.
Instant funding for new builds
There is no doubt that many pension funds would jump at the chance to invest in domestic property across the UK, either building and then selling these properties outright or becoming landlords to those looking to rent. There are literally billions of pounds waiting for this opportunity although it has to be said that previous governments and all political parties have so far been scared to take the plunge.
There is obviously a concern that opening the floodgates to pension fund investment in the domestic UK property market would push prices higher. However, surely there must be a way of staggering this investment over the years and pointing some of the funds available towards the newbuild sector?
When is a free market not a free market?
In what is being described as a “sudden lurch to the left” the Labour Party is in trouble this week after suggesting rental controls and even the potential compulsory purchase of unused development property. It seems that some politicians are happy for investors to pay top dollar for their property investments but not so happy for them to control rental levels or land banks going forward. The simple fact is that the Labour Party can shout it from the rooftops but there is no way on earth investors will ever accept this massive lurch to the left.
The more promises the Labour Party make to appease left-wing voters the greater the shock if they were to gain power. If they went ahead with even just a fraction of their promises (some would call them threats) this would decimate the UK property market, make the UK a laughing stock in the investment arena and, due to the limited control of rents, would see a massive increase after the initial three-year period. It may grab the headlines, it may grab more votes but these dangerous policies introduced by the Labour Party would, in the eyes of many experts, take us back to the “dark ages”.
Will these hardline policies backfire?
There is growing evidence that voters are becoming concerned about the extreme left-wing policies being suggested by the Labour Party. There is also concern about any influence the SNP may have over a coalition government with some experts suggest we will see a significant change in voting intentions during the next few days. Up until the announcement of rent controls and potential compulsory purchase options for undeveloped land there was a feeling that the election was going the way of the Labour Party.
Has Ed Miliband thrown away the best opportunity he will ever have to become Prime Minister of the UK?