I was interested to read an article on the proposed Housing Benefit cuts in the Observer yesterday, and went online to have another look at it.
However perhaps the most interesting part of the article was not so much what it said (a new report saying that families with three or more children won’t be able to afford to live hardly anywhere in social housing), but the comments which followed.
I don’t know how representative of the nation at large people who post comments to online Observer news reports are. However here is an assortment of the points made and views expressed (re-worded a bit). No doubt by the time you read this, there will be more.
- the minimum wage is now the standard wage – increase this and property will become affordable (as in people being able to afford to pay for it) again
- We need to build more housing, especially social housing
- If people can’t afford the rents they should live in caravans (lots of discussion about this one, including people pointing out the inevitable NIMBY objections there would be to having the caravan parks in their area)
- those in power want parts of the capital to be just for the rich (like it is in Paris)
- kids in large families should share bedrooms like they did in the old days and not expect the state to pay for them to have a bedroom of their own
- bring back rent control and secure tenancies
- The problem is the shortage of permanent full time employment – people run up rent arrears in between contracts
- The government are trying to destroy the ethos of social housing by stealth. Thats why they are so keen to evict families if just one of them is a rioter (or has been found guilty of ANY crime)
- City centre accommodation should be for people who work, not scroungers on benefit
- Private tenants should be given the right to buy – at an appropriate discount
- The unemployed and low paid workers should be housed in policed caravan parks on brownfield sites
- Housing benefit cuts should be used to finance building new factories and housing in out of town sites
- Get rid of the Queen and make her pay for it all
- There isn’t really a housing problem, just too many second homes
- (My favourite this one) The problem is that lots of politicians in central and local government are landlords. Property letting should be included in the register of interests
- Its wrong to keep making overpriced payments just to keep people where they are. Reduce the benefit and rents WILL go down
- The UK is over crowded. The answer is to stop all immigration
- Bring an end to money and have all property held in common, to each according to his need
- People out of work should only get accommodation paid for if they are willing to learn new skills
- Companies who make big profits but only pay their workers minimum wages insufficient to pay their housing, should have the difference taken in tax
Quite a few predictable ones there, but also a few that are really interesting. What do YOU think?