Thursday, 27 March 2014

Capital, just capital!

The Daily Mail gives us another two examples of how hard-pressed, hard- working home-owners can increase the value of their land and buildings:

Knock down a building and get planning permission for something bigger

Get the government to spend everybody else's money on improving the railway network

Have any of these landowners actually added anything to their own "capital";, i.e. the buildings and improvements on their own site?

Methinks not. Some of them will have paid for the railway indirectly through their taxes, but many won't, and tenants are paying those taxes too.


Bayard said...

Where someone's property is reduced in value, e.g. by a new railway line being built past it, there is a mechanism in place for the landowner to claim compensation. It would just as easy to use the same mechanism to present a bill to everyone whose property has been increased in value. (Of course this wouldn't apply to HS2, AFAICS, as no-one is actually going to benefit apart from those involved in planning or building it).

Mark Wadsworth said...

B, except that house prices can only go up, I think that's in the British Constitution.

"It is the foremost duty of Her Majesty's Government to make house prices go up and compensate those whose house prices haven't gone up by as much as they might have."