Lunchtime news March 1

The real cost of the council tax has doubled since 1997, reports the Daily Telegraph, with the average bill going up £480 a year.

Halifax Bank of Scotland lent £74bn in mortgages last year – one in five home loans made – reveals The Guardian.

Brighton‘s move to a lottery for school admissions could have a big impact on house prices, says The Independent.

House prices are part of an inter-generational mugging of under-35s by baby boomers, says Faisal Islam in the New Statesman.

New research for the DCLG shows the nine housing market renewal pathfinder areas have made a strong start.

Four out of ten affordable homes are being built with modern methods of construction, according to a new report by the Housing Corporation and English Partnerships

…but a report in Inside Housing says unskilled contractors are causing a catalogue of problems.