From: DE Mercer, Settle.
IT would appear that one of the problems with shortage of housing in rural areas is not the lack of it, but the cost of it.
More and more properties are being purchased by affluent ‘outsiders’ and turned into holiday accommodation which, in turn, is let out at very high rents that local people can ill-afford. The purchasers regard permanent residence with indifference.
In the small hamlet where I live, there are five properties out of 18 which are holiday lets – the cost ranging from £450 to £3,000 per week during holiday seasons and the festive season.
How can families living on, or below average wages, get on the housing ladder or rental market?
When all the rental properties are let out, the population in the hamlet more than doubles, with the added complication of parking and the noise created with reunions, hen parties etc.
You will hear it said that visitors bring money into the area. From what I can see, they call the big supermarkets who deliver within one hour of them arriving. The only thing they leave locally is rubbish (lots of it) and dog excrement.
From: Derek Lunn, Harrogate.
I REFER to recent articles highlighting the scarcity of bungalows and they being the fourth highest priority for people seeking to buy a new home.
A few weeks ago housebuilder McCarthy and Stone slammed planning rules, claiming they restrict the number of one-storey homes being built by prioritising high density, high-rise developments.
The company called on the Government to consider making it mandatory to provide bungalows on large-scale developments.
There were only 2,418 bungalows built in the UK in 2018. Of the many developments being built in Harrogate and surrounding area, I doubt if any bungalows are being built.
The additional area of land required for bungalows can be balanced by the premium price they attract, and by offering a similar number of apartments that take up a lesser proportionate area of land.
With the ageing population, demand for bungalows is at an all-time high. Living on one level would make it far easier, especially for people with mobility problems.
From: Sue Witty, Mayfield Avenue, Scarborough.
RE reports that hundreds of empty homes are vacant for at least six months: there are properties on Albemarle Crescent, Scarborough, which have been derelict for years (the former Scarborough Carpets shop and two neighbouring terraced houses).
Buildings like these either need restoring or demolishing so that new housing can be built. The council should track down owners and bring them to task.