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Welfare Reform on the Web (December 2006): Social housing - UK

The culture of choice: consumerism in the welfare state

E. Daniel

Housing, Care and Support, vol.9, Oct. 2006, p.30-32

The supported housing sector is facing the challenge of marketing its services directly to consumers armed with direct payments and personal budgets. Consumers will require support to make informed choices, and there may be constraints on how they can spend their personal budgets. It is also difficult to see how preventive services will fit into the new consumerist agenda.

Shared vision

J. Birch

Roof, Nov./Dec. 2006, p.30-32

The present Labour government is attempting to spread the benefits of home ownership by promoting various shared equity schemes. However, these do not help social housing tenants who cannot afford to buy even a share of a home. The article calls for a new approach that would enable tenants to own housing assets while continuing to pay rent and without having to get a mortgage.

Taxing problem

J. Zitron

Roof, Nov./Dec. 2006

There are reports circulating that the Department for Communities and Local Government is planning to tax housing associations’ financial surpluses. These have accumulated because government policy and housing association timidity are driving large numbers of associations away from building new homes. Associations need to be given more incentives to use their funds.

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