Guernsey To Monitor Housing Stocks

By ExpatBriefing.com Editorial 28 March, 2011

The Guernsey government has announced that it is to enhance its monitoring of Guernsey housing stocks for non-residents, under the Corporate Housing Programme, through the publication of Annual Housing Stock Bulletins.

The bulletin provides for the first time reliable and robust data on numbers, sizes and types of residential properties on the island, resulting from a joint project between the Policy Council and the Housing Department. The system itself has been developed in conjunction with Digimap and brings together information from five different States Departments and other sources.

Dr Stephen Langford, Chief Officer of Housing Department, said: "A key part of the Corporate Housing Programme is being able to monitor whether various housing policy initiatives are having a beneficial effect. However, until the development of this database, the amount of information available on Guernsey’s housing stock was very limited and heavily reliant on the five-yearly Housing Needs Surveys. While those surveys will continue, we now have a system that is being updated continuously, and which will enable us, year-on-year, to effectively monitor changes in the size and make-up of the island’s housing stock. As a result of bringing all this data together we are already more knowledgeable, and this means housing policy decisions will be better informed and will allow the Housing Department to better plan for future housing needs going forward.”

Dr Andy Sloan, States Economist, Policy Council, added: "We are now able to provide policy makers with reliable estimates of total properties and their number by type, location, size, TRP, number of bedrooms to cite a few examples. I am pleased that, together with Housing and Digimap, we have been able to develop a system with robust reporting capabilities of such breadth and depth."

The Guernsey government announced recently that it would be reviewing the open market for real estate. Houses on the open market in Guernsey are allowed to be purchased by individuals not resident in Guernsey, albeit at significantly higher cost than other island equivalents. Prices are driven down however by the requirement for those requesting to live and work in Guernsey to obtain a housing license. According to Chief Minister, Lyndon Trott the review will seek to bolster the non-resident housing scheme, not destroy it. Currently in Guernsey, 9% of the island’s residential properties fall under the open market for real estate.

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