Housing and Planning

Rent caps will worsen Britain’s broken housing market


In the Media

Matthew Lesh writes for The Express

Commenting on a new report recommending a cap on rent rises in England and Wales, Matthew Lesh, Director of Public Policy and Communications at the free market think tank, the Institute of Economic Affairs, said:

“Rent controls are always and everywhere a disaster. Scotland tried a cap on rent increases for existing tenancies. The result was landlords significantly increasing rents on new tenancies, which jumped by 14% in the year to September 2023. It has become more difficult for new tenants to find somewhere to live, with the average search time increasing from 12 to 16 weeks. There are reports of landlords pulling their properties from the market and spending less on maintenance and improvements. 

“The only solution to the housing crisis is to fix Britain’s broken planning system so that enough homes can be built where people want to live. This fiddling will only make things worse.”


Notes to Editors

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The mission of the Institute of Economic Affairs is to improve understanding of the fundamental institutions of a free society by analysing and expounding the role of markets in solving economic and social problems. The IEA is a registered educational charity and independent of all political parties.