Extending help-to-buy will only make the housing crisis worse | Laurie Macfarlane
To make homes places to live, rather than accumulate wealth, we need to overcome our addiction to house price growth
In moments of crisis, British chancellors have often resorted to throwing money at the housing market. Behind the slick PR machine, Rishi Sunak appears to be following the same old playbook. After cutting stamp duty in July’s summer statement, the chancellor is now reportedly planning to extend the help-to-buy scheme, which was due to be scaled back later this year and phased out entirely by 2023.
In Britain, we’ve seen our fair share of disastrous policies in recent years, but few have been as predictably self-defeating as help-to-buy. Introduced by George Osborne in 2013 as a means of helping people onto the housing ladder, it was clear from the outset that the policy would do more harm than good.