In a Cluster 17 survey for “Le Point”, the French are divided on how to identify and resolve the causes of poor housing.
By Kevin Brookes*
LThere is a consensus finding: 89% of French people consider that it is difficult to rent accommodation and 92% that it is difficult to access property. If the French agree that it has never been so complicated to find housing, the latest survey from the Cluster 17 Institute for Point reveals significant divisions between right-wing and left-wing voters when it comes to appointing someone responsible or finding solutions…
The voters of Jean-Luc Mélenchon are in fact more numerous to point the finger at the wealthiest French people who invest in second homes (22%, or twice as much as the average), while the voters of Marine Le Pen and Éric Zemmour prefer to accuse the State (40%).
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This policy, which has nevertheless demonstrated its ineffectiveness in the places where it has been applied – such as London or San Francisco – is nevertheless considered by 23% of Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s voters as a priority measure. Other measures, often mentioned by public leaders such as the idea of an energy renovation plan, or the construction of more social housing, are not considered priority measures by the French.
Two main obstacles
A very large majority of people surveyed looking for accommodation have difficulty finding one. A sign of this difficulty: only 25% of tenants plan to buy housing in the next two years. This lack of projection also transcends partisan and social boundaries. Everyone, or almost everyone, agrees that it is difficult to find housing in France, owners and tenants alike.
Those who wish to become owners report two main obstacles: prices (54%) and borrowing rates (48%) which are too high. Two thirds of respondents already own their home, a proportion which varies greatly depending on the candidate supported in the 2022 presidential election. We find the largest proportion of owners among the voters of Valérie Pécresse (83%) and the most low among Jean-Luc Mélenchon voters (54%).
Despite the consensus on the difficulties of finding housing, voters on the right and left do not find themselves around a consensual solution… A sign that the left and the right have not disappeared in the value systems of the French.
*Kevin Brookes is a professor-researcher in political science.