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A housing lottery in which even the winners are trapped by their own good fortune

When someone buys a house for the first time their attitude to house prices changes instantly from wanting them to be as low as possible to wanting to be as high. This, in a nutshell, describes the British housing crisis. High house prices are a drug to which a big majority of the voting population are irredeemably addicted. All that, however, could be about to change. A survey for The Observer reveals that 80% of respondents think there is a housing crisis, a number that must by definition include a majority of home owners whom rising house prices can only enrich. So what has caused this change of heart? The answer is children. For whereas the early winners in the housing bonanza (early baby boomers who bought at low prices in the '70s) could afford, five or ten years ago, to help out their adult children with substantial deposits, such opportunities are rapidly closing down. People who bought in the '90s did not get such bargains, and now prices for their twenty-something children are so high that the amount of help that parents can offer is nowhere like enough. Suddenly, lower prices are in many more people's interests. Just do the maths. Govt needs to focus not on keeping market buoyant, (at huge cost to taxpayer) but on managing the transition to much lower prices.