Housing crisis

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Professor David Bell on inter and intra-generational inequality (your report, 15 October) sends out another stark message on the scale of the problem Scotland will face as it attempts to create a society in which all our people can flourish.

Although most Scottish households now own their homes, a long-term trend of
increasing house prices well in excess of general prices makes the prospect of home ownership for all an unlikely ambition. That’s why I welcomed Professor Bell’s focus on those who cannot compete in the race to become homeowners.

The Commission on Housing and Wellbeing, which I chair, has committed itself to exploring the very same affordability problems for those unable to purchase their own home.

We are concerned for many young families on moderate
incomes who are trying to break into the market with very little success.

We are also committed to
encouraging the development of a more robust private
rented sector for those households less interested in or able to own their home.

Our consultation paper provides an insight into some of the commission’s early ideas for what more might be done to help improve housing supply and conditions in Scotland.

You can explore our initial thoughts at housingandwellbeing.org/consultation. We are seeking views on our work up until 28 November. We will publish our final report in the spring of 2015, in good time to try and influence party manifestos in Scotland before elections to the Scottish Parliament a year later.

Robert Black

Chair, the Housing and Wellbeing Commission

Shelter Scotland

South Charlotte Street

Edinburgh

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