Posts tagged ‘Politics’
Grant Shapps, the Conservatives’ former shadow housing minister, has confirmed, via his twitter page last night, that he has been appointed Minister of State for Housing.
It is understood that the role no longer has Cabinet status and therefore, unlike his Labour predecessor, he will not attend Cabinet meetings.
Is this, coupled with the time it took to make the appointment, an indication as to where housing is on the list of priorities?
Let us know your thoughts below.
A full guide to Cabinet members can be found here.
About Grant Shapps
Previous positions held
MP for Welwyn Hatfield, May 2005 –
Vice-Chairman of Conservative Party Campaigning, Dec 2005 -
Shadow Minister for Housing, June 2007 – May 2010
Proudest political achievement
Founding the Conservative Homelessness Foundation
Interests outside of politics
Aviation (holds a pilot’s licence)
Married to Belinda
Three children: Hadley and twins, Noa and Tabytha
Information taken from the Conservatives website
UPDATE 20TH MAY
LINK TO NEW POST – HIPS SUSPENDED WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT
The Conservatives and Liberal Democrats have released a ‘Coalition Agreement’ document setting out the what has been reached between the two parties on a range of issues. In the document the following is buried towards the end under the Environment section pt 6 – a confirmation that Home Information Packs (HIPs) are to be scrapped and Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) retained.
HIPs are one of the first casualties of the new coalition government and this is positive news for the housing market. Sellers see them as an annoyance, buyers don’t ask to see them and solicitors often refuse to rely on the information they contain. In an environment where property transactions are still far too low, any additional expense that makes sellers think twice about putting their homes on the market is not welcome. The introduction of HIPs was full of good intentions – designed to speed up the home-buying process and prevent people pulling out of purchases further down the line. However, the packs were ultimately diluted to the point where buyers and mortgage lenders did not have the vital information they needed – such as a structural survey – and they’ve been on borrowed time ever since.
The retention of Energy Performance Certificates is an environmentally positive move, but it is possibly more about complying with EU directives on reducing carbon emissions, clearly a positive move, than helping home buyers and sellers. The new government should now consider replacing HIPs with a simple pre-sales pack to include local searches and a draft contract for sale only.
We’d like to hear your thoughts on how this might effect the market, speed up the sales process or simply have no benefit at all.
Leave a comment below or come and find us on Twitter.
10 Downing Street is one of the most exclusive addresses in the country, with a valuation to match. It is more than likely that Number 10 is one of the few properties that will never come on to the property market and it takes millions of votes to secure the keys. Messrs Cameron and Clegg clearly have a struggle on their hands to wrestle those keys from Mr Brown who has been a Downing Street resident for twelve years now and will be very reluctant to call in the removal men.
So, with just over two weeks to go, the race is on amongst the party leaders to get their hands on a piece of prime real estate in the heart of London (SW1A) which we value at £4.5m. It’s worth noting that this figure is only for the official residential digs in Downing Street – which consists of 3,800 sq ft. Yes, surprisingly small.
Here are some other interesting facts relating to the official residences on Downing Street:
- Winner will enjoy rent-free living which would otherwise run to £4,250 per week
- Value of PM’s residence has dropped by £462,420 during Brown’s occupancy
- Under Blair, Downing Street residence grew in value by avg. of over £335k p.a.
- Brown and Major tenures reduced value versus growth under Blair and Thatcher
- Stamp Duty bill (if on open market) would be a whopping £225k (5% from April 2011)
In light of the current deficit the next Chancellor may be well advised to think about selling up and moving his boss’ official residence to one of the other Downing Streets across Britain. The most cost-effective move for taxpayers would be to Downing Street in Sutton-In-Ashfield where the average property costs £50,853. Alternatively, if commuting to Westminster is essential for the PM, a move to Downing Street in Farnham, Surrey, where the average property price is £253,528 would help pay down more than £4m of the budget deficit.
If there is a change in leadership over the next few weeks, Gordon Brown is likely to drop quite a few rungs on the property ladder as house prices in his own constituency of Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath are amongst the lowest in the land at an average of £120,910 versus his current address in SW1 where average house prices are £920,361.
Cameron and Clegg will both be keen to upgrade to SW1 from their own constituencies where current values are £289,686 and £219,136 respectively.
Changes in value of official residential digs at 10 Downing Street, SW1A
|Leader||Arrival Value||Departure Value||Value change||Years in office||Av. change p.a|
Take a look at our recent post on how the leaders, constituencies and parties perform from a property perspective.
Please feel free to share and use these figures; all we ask is that you credit the source as the Zoopla.co.uk and if possible link to Zoopla.co.uk.