Why is Ed Miliband talking about rent controls? The obvious answer is that people are worried about the cost of living and those renting particularly so.
Why is housing in general expensive, whether you are renting or buying? Because we have more people who want property than we have property. The demand side is obvious and one of the reasons that the UKIP message is resonating so strongly right now. Labour’s big 2008 crash pushed private housebuilding into a nose dive. But what is the long term picture for housing completions in this country? You can find out by going to the DCLG housing completions stats.
If you add up housing association and council house completions to work out how many social houses were built since the war you will find that the worst ten years was the period 1998-2007.
The worst year for council house completions was 2004 when just 130 were completed in the whole UK.
The worst year for housing association completions since these overtook council housing as the preferred way of delivering social housing was 2003 when 17,620 were completed.
Ed Miliband thinks we are stupid. He really does.