London is quite sparsely populated compared with most capital cities, so there is tremendous potential to increase housing supply. In our view, Sadiq should be concentrating on reducing red tape and promoting housebuilding. His drive for affordable homes is laudable but, combined with his commitment to working towards a zero-carbon London, he may find his policies self defeating.
The vast majority of land in London is in profitable use, so placing layers of charges on development merely reduces the development value of land and often renders its existing use a better bet. This is particularly the case when stamp duty is factored in, not to mention the considerable costs and risks involved in trying to navigate the planning system.
London mayor Sadiq Khan is to launch the UK’s most comprehensive inquiry into the impact of foreign investment flooding London’s housing market, amid growing fears about the scale of gentrification and rising housing costs in the capital. Khan said there are “real concerns” about the surge in the number of homes being bought by overseas investors, adding that the inquiry would map the scale of the problem for the first time. “It’s clear we need to better understand the different roles that overseas money plays in London’s housing market, the scale of what’s going on, and what action we can take to support development and help Londoners find a home,” Khan told the Guardian.