50% don’t believe in government’s housing plan

 In Housing, News

A survey has found that 50% of the Portuguese do not believe that the Government’s plan to alleviate the country’s chronic housing shortage will be effective.

Around 62% think that the ‘More Housing’ package designed by the António Costa government will not contribute to solving the housing crisis and that wavering interest rates on mortgages would not be enough to help families.
Over 50% criticise the policy of the coercive renting of empty properties and think it is an attack on private property. On the other hand, 59% to applaud the limit fixed on rent increases and new contracts.
The poll was carried out by Aximage on behalf of the news outlets Diário de Notícias, Jornal de Negócios and radio TSF.
The findings of the survey will only pour more cold water onto the Government’s programme which has been roundly condemned by nearly everyone in Portuguese civic and associative society bar tenants associations.
The Government has also taken an ear bashing from Portugal’s President Marcelo Rebelo da Sousa who in a question and answer session to commemorate Correio da Manhã 44th anniversary, called the plan “unworkable” and “inoperable from the start to the finish” and essentially a “poster law” meaning a government publicity stunt.
“Poster laws are laws that appear to trumpet certain programme policies (that look good on paper) but are unworkable in practice and raise expectations that they will instantly fail. The housing problem is real, but the solution is unworkable”, he said.
A period of public consultation on the measures, which are opposed by landlords, businesses, the tourism sector, and virtually all real estate associations is due to end today. (Friday, March 24)
Some of the more controversial proposals from the Government include: the mandatory renting of vacant properties with municipalities able to earmark vacant properties, ask landlords to rent them out for the purposes of sub-letting, and coercively do so it the answer is ‘no’. Encouraging owners operating AL (holiday rentals) to transfer to the long-term rental market (no IRS tax on income until 2023); with a new tax levy if they opt to remain in the AL short-term sector.
Also, not allowing any new AL licences, except in interior rural areas to help support the local economy — and reviewing all licences in 2023, and every five year thereafter.
And the scraping of the Golden Visa regime (or at least the housing component of it (the most popular) and any owners who have Golden Visas will only be able to renew them if they live in them themselves or if they rent them out on the long-term market.

Photo: Presidência da República