The Labour Party has branded government attempts to address plummeting home-ownership as “a complete failure” as new figures project that fewer than one in four under-35s will own a home of their own by 2020 – 614,000 fewer than in 2010.

Official data show that to date there are 340,000 fewer home-owners aged under 35 since 2010.

Labour releases its figures at the start of a campaign week focusing on housing ahead of the local elections on 5 May. Jeremy Corbyn and Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Housing John Healey will visit a scheme run by Birmingham Council designed to increase the number of homes to buy and to rent on Monday 11th April.

New home (PD)

John Healey has said that reversing the decline in home-ownership will be Labour’s housing priority.

Under the Labour government between 1997 and 2010 a million more households became home-owners. However, since 2010 this progress has gone into reverse, and home-ownership is near to the lowest level for a generation.

Of particular concern is the drop in young home-owners on lower incomes.

Separate analysis commissioned by Labour and released previously has revealed that the biggest percentage fall in young home-owners is amongst working class young people including those in ‘routine and manual occupations’.

However, there is growing concern that government policies are skewed towards those on higher incomes, so failing to help those who most need help to buy a home:

– the latest ‘help-to-buy’ figures show that thousands of people earning over £100,000 a year are benefitting from government policies ostensibly designed to help struggling first-time buyers
– analysis by independent experts including Shelter and Savills has shown that so-called ‘starter homes’ costing up to £450,000 will be unaffordable for people on average incomes
– following housing investment being cut by 60% government figures show the number of affordable homes to buy has fallen by 28% since 2010.

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Commenting, John Healey MP said:

We need more good homes of all types to fix the country’s housing crisis.

“The shocking fall in home-ownership over the last six years shows that what used to be a natural part of growing up is becoming a luxury for those on the highest salaries, or whose parents have the deepest pockets.

“A million more families became home-owners under Labour but on the Tories’ watch the number of young people owning a home is now in freefall.

“This is a complete failure. Ministers have got no long-term plan for declining home-ownership and a worsening housing crisis.

“With the Conservatives in government, the best hope for millions of people across the country at present is Labour in local government – our Labour councillors and councils campaigning to put Labour values into practice in their areas.”

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