The proposal to increase housing allowances for the public service is a commendable concept but not well thought out. In the last couple of years, rentals and housing prices have steadily increased. This, I speculate, is in anticipation of the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) project and the cash flow it is expected to bring.
Increasing the public service housing allowance may have the same effect as the LNG hype. Real estates and landlords may capitalize on this and increase the rentals even further. The result could be very high rental and property prices. This is because there are no policies to regulate the industry, leaving the realtors to set prices and rates at their own discretion.
The sensible thing to do is write a set of policies governing the real estate industry. This is to ensure that the consumers are given a fair deal. At the moment, some rentals and property prices do not add up. There are properties on the market that are of low or sub standard quality but are being charged a very high rate.
It would more or less be like putting candy in front of a kid and expecting them to leave it alone.