Letter: House price rat race

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The Independent Culture
Letter:House price rat race

Sir: Your report on the Henley Centre/Salvation Army report The Paradox of Prosperity ("Britain in 2010: rich but far too stressed to enjoy it", 15 September) fails to probe the statement that "people will need to ensure private financial provision for their old age and will be less able to withdraw from the rat race".

The force driving many people to compete in the rat race is house price inflation. The British middle classes celebrate house price inflation when rational analysis suggests that, if houses were cheaper, working to pay for one's home would be less of a challenge.

If in the period between now and 2010 they decided to concentrate on funding their retirement rather than taking on bigger mortgages they would then have the time to enjoy their homes and in doing so avoid some of the problems that the report predicts.

ROBERT HADFIELD

Windermere, Cumbria

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