Liberal Vannin leader, Ramsey MHK Lawrie Hooper says the government must adopt a flexible approach to meet the Island’s housing needs if everyone is to have the opportunity to have affordable, suitable and sustainable homes as their needs change throughout their lives.
He was speaking after a public meeting hosted by the party during which the Island’s housing issues were discussed.
A statement issued by the party stressed the need for more lower cost homes for purchase and rent to meet the levels of demand.
The statement continued: “Conversion of properties in Douglas town centre, Ramsey, Peel and Castletown for residential use will help local shops, bars and cafes. More low-cost mortgages and similar schemes are required to help young people buy their first home and those needing to purchase due to relationship breakdown. Restrictions may be needed to reduce buy to let purchases and ensure subsidised homes remain available into the future, for people on low incomes.”
The party also called for an Island wide survey to be undertaken to assess housing needs: “Suitable accommodation also means adapting existing homes with loans and grants to help people improve insulation and replace fossil fuel boilers,” they added. Former party leader, Peter Karran, who attended the meeting stated: “It is not a simple issue of creating more housing if it’s going to be bought up by the investment market and then used to exploit people who cannot afford to get on the property ladder. People need nests, not nest eggs”