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Whose Housing Crisis?Assets and Homes in a Changing Economy$
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Nick Gallent

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781447345312

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447345312.001.0001

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Housing’s economic context

Housing’s economic context

(p.47) 3 Housing’s economic context
Whose Housing Crisis?

Nick Gallent

Policy Press

Housing has long been implicated in the productive economy, providing a focus for manufacturing, construction and material consumption. The privatisation, assetisation and financialisation of housing in the twentieth century has broadened and deepened its economic function. This chapter examines the changing profile of the UK economy and the greater centrality today of services related to real estate and debt securitisation. It explores the idea of a ‘credit switch’ in the latter half of the twentieth century into the financialised built environment and the implications of that switch for both the wider economy and public revenues. The chapter explores the broadening role of housing in the UK economy and implications for productivity, workplace earnings and housing affordability (relative to those earnings). The tax treatment of housing – and various instruments of financialisation - are presented as critical scaffolding for this economic shift, which is theorised/explained using a range of key literature.

Keywords:   Economy, Services versus manufacturing, Financialisation, Credit switch, Tax, Public revenues, Housing affordability

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