Jersey's Housing Minister creates emergency taskforce to tackle property 'crisis'

  • ITV Channel's Fred Dimbleby looks into the extent of Jersey's housing crisis.

Jersey's new Housing Minister has officially started a 'Crisis Emergency Taskforce' to tackle the island's pressured property market, ITV News has learned.

Deputy Sam Mézec, who is also the leader of the Reform Jersey party, has told his team to establish the group "immediately".

They are expected to meet for the first time on Monday 5 February.

He added: "I have also brought forward the timeline for introducing new legislation to protect people who rent their homes."

The Jersey Landlords' Association said they looked forward to "working constructively with the Minister in future" but pointed to a recent consultation of more than 300 tenants and landlords as they called for a compromise.

The Association added: "We trust that Deputy Mézec will not ignore these voices in seeking to find a balance that is right for all stakeholders in Jersey's housing market." 

The cost of housing in the island has risen by 16.7% in the last 12 months and the latest data suggests the average house price is £681,000, compared to £291,000 in the UK.

The news of a government housing taskforce comes as the new Council of Ministers began their first day meeting officials at government buildings in Broad Street, after being officially elected on Tuesday (30 January).

Mandy Phillips, a resident in Jersey, says: "In the fifteen years I've lived in Jersey, I've moved house 13 or 14 times for a variety of reasons."

She added housing costs are a concern: "I work full-time and I have another job in the evening to be able to afford to pay rent.

"I feel totally unstable. I'm always on the move. I don't own much, everything I own fits in a transit van ready for the next move. I'm in my 50s now and still have no stability"