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Last night, new Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Liz Truss appointed Simon Clarke MP as the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities. Clarke has previously worked under Rishi Sunak at HM Treasury as Chief Secretary of the department. Furthermore, the 37-year-old had a role in the former Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG), now the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC), for seven months in 2020. His parliament voting record reveals that Clarke has not had direct involement in or spoken in any debates for the most predominant issues or housing bills. Clarke is the MP for Middlesborough South and East Cleveland, being originally voted in during the 2017 General Election as a "Red Wall" candidate.

Many have claimed that Clarke received his post due to his loyalty rather than genuine knowledge of the property industry — a few days ago he was noted as saying Liz truss would  “help struggling families and turbocharge the economy”. Nathan Emerson, Chief Executive of Propertymark, says:

"We congratulate Liz Truss on her successful election campaign and urge her to work with property professionals to find solutions to these major issues facing the sector."

"Our latest market insight reports show for every rental property available there are an average of 11 applicants, while home buyers outnumber sellers by seven to one."

"This is creating affordability issues, particularly in the private rented sector."

"We believe that gap can be closed through measures that bring the many tens of thousands of long-term empty properties back and the introduction of focussed targets for new homes that are based on an identified need for each tenure across the country."

Ben Beadle, Chief Executive Officer of the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA), has said his organisation "welcomes Simon Clarke’s appointment as Housing Secretary."

"The new Minister will need urgently to address the rental housing supply crisis."

"The new Minister will need urgently to address the rental housing supply crisis. Damaging tax hikes and uncertainty over reforms to the private rented sector are leading many landlords to leave the market when demand for rented homes remains high."

"All this is doing is increasing rents, making it more difficult for those wanting to become homeowners."

"The Government needs to look afresh at the rental reform White Paper to ensure the plans in it have the confidence of responsible landlords."

"This needs to include action to tackle anti-social tenants, scrapping plans that would damage the student housing market, and reforming the courts to ensure legitimate possession cases are dealt with more swiftly."

We here at Property Hub Ltd are interested in hearing your opinions on this appointment and Liz Truss's newly announced cabinet.

References:
The Negotiator

If you have any questions, Please speak to Sachinkumar Gupta of Property Hub Ltd.

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