Examination of Witnesses (Questions 356-359)|
WEDNESDAY 5 DECEMBER 2001
356. Good morning, can I welcome you to the
fourth session of the Select Committee inquiry into empty homes.
Can I ask you to identify yourselves for the record.
(Mr Williams) Good morning, Chairman. My name is Peter
Williams from the Council of Mortgage Lenders and this is my colleague,
357. Do you want to say anything by way of introduction
or are you happy to go straight to questions?
(Mr Williams) Very happy, Chairman.
Chairman: Thank you very much. Oona King?
358. The Committee has heard a range of views
about what might be an appropriate vacancy rate that enables the
housing market to function effectively. What is your view of an
acceptable vacancy rate in the private sector?
(Mr Williams) I do not think there is a CML position
on vacancy rates. I think the historical position of vacancy rates
has been about four per cent. Our sense is that with greater mobility,
choice, etcetera, probably we will move to a higher vacancy rate.
It is one of those topic areas where there has been remarkably
359. Obviously you would all say there are regional
variations. Do you think that has to be taken into account with
a vacancy rate?
(Mr Williams) Yes, without doubt, one of the issues
now is that we are getting much stronger regional and more varied
local markets. The vacancy rates will vary hugely across the UK
as a whole, so I am sure you are right.