Why governments should not enforce long-term contracts in the UK’s private rented sector
Housing costs are high in the UK and rents are expected to rise at what many would regard as alarming rates in the future, as housing supply persistently fails to keep up with burgeoning demand. Threatening the viability of the only tenure that has housed growing numbers of people in the past decade is an odd response to such a crisis. The UK needs more homes, not regulations that put off investment. There is no case for governments to intervene to either enforce or incentivise long-term contracts. No market failure exists; rather formal, fair, mutually binding long-term rental contracts are generally unattractive options in the UK housing context.
This report was written and researched by:
Professor Michael Ball
Professor of Urban and Property Economics
Professor Michael Ball is the Professor of Urban and Property Economics at Henley Business School, University of Reading. Michael’s research interests cover housing studies, urban economic, commercial property investment and real estate markets, urban regeneration, land-use planning, urban history and construction economics.
He has published extensively, co-authored the textbook, the Economics of Commerical Property Markets, and was author of the annual RICS European Housing Review (www.rics.org), which was for 12 years the prime publication on European housing markets.
He was Lead Panel member of the Housing Market and Planning Analysis (HMPA) Panel of the Department of Communities and Local Government, from 2007-2010 and has advised many other public and private bodies. He also co-chairs the Economics Group of the European Network for Housing Research.