Labour unveils ‘Land for the Many’ report
The Labour Party has commissioned a report about land ownership and control entitled ‘Land for the Many’, written by a group of academics, economists and land experts.
The report proposed that council tax be replaced by a ‘progressive property tax’ payable by the owners, not the tenants, while it recommended having a progressively higher rate of taxation for the top four property bands by value.
The study mooted revealing the identities of owners of offshore companies holding UK property, while it said details of land owned by trusts should be published in order to tackle money laundering.
The paper argued that the concentration of land ownership by a small number of people has worsened economic inequality and the housing crisis.
Jeremy Leaf, north London estate agent and a former RICS residential chairman, said: “Although some people may be scared by the prospect, some of the ideas have merit, particularly regarding the need to modernise the current outdated council tax system.
“Ensuring that upper bands are added and regular revaluations take place, would make it fairer for all as current limits have not kept pace with inflation.
“As for the other measures, not many people would take issue with stable prices and more affordable homes but pulling that particular rabbit out of the hat has always proved difficult in the past.
“Killing market forces and the ability of the private sector to generate much-needed housing for all will remain important unless the public sector is going to take over the majority of housing provision.”
Labour will consider the report’s recommendations ahead of the next general election.