Everyone loves a good underdog story don’t they?

Felix Shaw

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Everyone loves a good underdog story don’t they?
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Everyone loves a good underdog story don’t they?
They’re what this country was built on. And they seem to be everywhere at the moment these underdogs doing well against the odds. Look at the England cricket team, completely written off before the start of the first ashes test in Cardiff back in June, written off again after they were hammered at Lords, and then yesterday happened. Australia bowled out in just 18.3 overs, the shortest first innings in test history. It was completely unpredictable and incredible to watch.

Just like the unexpected Labour leadership contest that’s happening at the moment. No one predicted that Jeremy Corbyn would be anything other than an ‘also-ran’, if anyone tells you they did, they’re lying. Yet here we are. Obviously political party membership polling is notoriously difficult and private polls are always questionable, but when every poll, plus bookmakers, plus anecdotal evidence, all seem to point towards a Corbyn victory you eventually have to start thinking maybe this is actually going to happen.

So what if it does happen? What would a Corbyn-led Labour party’s housing policies be, for example? Thankfully, unlike most of his competitors, Corbyn’s been quite upfront about his housing policies. They include:

– Public investment to build 240,000 homes per year, half of which will be council homes
– Opposition to the right-to-buy extension to housing association homes, but the introduction of a form of right-to-buy for private tenants, to be funded by redirecting the tax benefits received by private landlords
– The reintroduction of regional home building targets
– Private rents to be linked to average local earnings rather than market rate
– An increase in home ownership through removing buy-to-let landlord subsidies
– Allowing councils to compulsorily purchase sites at ‘fair value’ if developers are not using them
– A Land-Value Tax on undeveloped land which has planning permission
– A reversal of the government’s extension of permitted development rights

Corbyn’s policies are obviously radical, and at the moment we could only speculate about how they would play out in reality. But it seems there’s an undeniable appetite for radical ideas when it comes to housing, and the fact that Corbyn has been so open about what he actually wants to do should he ever win power, compared to the generalised statements from the other candidates, seems to be doing him no harm. Like the England cricket team, write him off at your peril.

If you want to know more, or are looking to engage with Labour, Conservatives or Liberal Democrats, get in touch.