WITH more properties coming onto the market at higher price with less sales being agreed, is it to people’s benefit to continue to push prices up?

I don’t think so.

If you’re looking to move up market, whether from a one bed to a two bed or from a three bed to a four bed and the house prices are rising, you’ve got to find more money.

As a proportional increase, if the prices are rising, you’ve got to find twice as much to move up the ladder.

People think it’s good to have equity in their home, but it doesn’t help when they want to move upmarket to a larger property.

When moving down market, from a four bedroom to a three, that’s when you do make money and you’ll typically already have equity in your property.

People downsizing are usually mature and elderly and have paid off their mortgages.

It’s the wrong way round, it would appear that the rich are benefiting and getting richer, while younger people can’t even raise a deposit to even get on the housing ladder.

There’s a risk that we may see a whole generation of people who can’t get on the housing ladder.

Some people have help from their parents, who use the equity on their own property, but if parents can’t get on the property ladder in the first instance, how can they help their sons and daughters?

Most people have paid off their mortgage and can live comfortably in their own home when they retire, but for the people who have never been able to buy, they’re forced to rent and may need to claim housing benefit once retired.

And if they’re claiming housing benefit, they’re forced into renting a one bed property because of the bedroom tax.

The welfare budget is high at the moment, but a lack of home ownership means it could potentially escalate out of control in 20, 30 or 40 years time.

But it would appear that the government isn’t doing anything about it because it’s not an immediate problem.

I look at things from an ethical point of view, but if you’ve got estate agents and letting agents who are paid purely on commission / targets, that results in a market where prices are continually going up, just so the estate agents can meet their personal targets.

If buyers all offered 20 per cent less than the advertised prices, house prices would drop by 20 per cent overnight and the market would re-stabilise.

But it takes all buyers to do that and vendors to agree, if only half of them did it, the prices would continue to increase.

In the rental market, rents go up if there’s a shortage.

There will always be someone willing to pay more, but is it right that it sets a new precedent and pushes other rents up?

If rents were capped, that would save money for the government on housing benefit and give tenants more disposable income to spend on consumer goods or entertainment.

Housing benefit is escalating out of control in more expensive areas of the country, which is money the government needs to find from taxpayers.

By capping rents, both paying tenants and those on housing benefit the overall spend could be reduced and taxes could be used elsewhere to the benefit of more people.

The majority of people’s income is going on their rent or mortgage, which is straight into the pockets of landlords or financial institutions rather than back into the economy.

It’s better for the economy for people to have more disposable money to spend on buying consumables / socialising and saving.

All of which holistically would benefit the masses in the long run.