There is no doubt that as a nation we are obsessed with house prices. It has become a cliché but sooner or later the cost of property is likely to rear its head at most dinner parties.
And the reason that newspaper editors and broadcasters return to the issue time and time again is because they know it is likely to stir interest and create debate.
The reason that the subject is so close to our heart is that here in the UK we are a nation of homeowners, more so than most other countries in the world.
The Englishman home is not just his castle it is also his investment for the future and many of us view bricks and mortar as a nest egg for our retirement and for our children.
But there are real reasons to be concerned about the housing bubble in the South East and in the capital leading to a severely unbalanced economy where all the nation’s wealth is concentrated in just one region.
Each week there are new stories emerging of property in the capital selling for incredible sums and there is evidence that homeowners are taking advantage of the current situation.
The fact that property costs so much in the capital is testament to the fact London is still an economic powerhouse and has the ability to attract investors from every corner of the globe.
Property is still one of the safest and most profitable investments, there may be occasional blips in the market but the long-term trend in the right locations is always going to be positive.
The soaring cost of property is a great bonus for those who are lucky enough to own a home in London and the South East but there is also a real downside.
Those in low-paid and unskilled work have always struggled to get a foot on the property ladder but the issue is now spreading out into other sections of the population.
Key workers new to London are highly unlikely to be in a position to buy a house or a flat and the same can also be said for white-collar workers. The reality of the current situation is that young professionals now stand very little or no chance of buying their own home in the capital.
Any organisation is reliant on the quality of the people who come to work for it and the same can be said for the capital.
If the large organisations and businesses are unable to recruit the right quality and calibre of staff then they will simply move on to new locations. Cities have to be an attractive proposition in every sense if they are to continue to thrive and prosper.
The key to solving the issue has to be the Government and our financial institutions. What we need is some imaginative thinking and new approaches and solutions to help people become homeowners and enjoy all the benefits that come with it by doing so.
Last week hundreds of thousands of public sector works went on strike across the country in protest over their pay and conditions.
The industrial action closed hundreds of schools and many public services ceased to function for a whole 24 hours.
Some commentators have claimed that the action was politically motivated and the aim was to make a statement about the Coalition Government and its policies.
However, there is no doubt that people in public sector jobs such as teaching and local government have seen a real cut in wages and tougher working conditions. But the reality is that we have all had to endure some tough times as a result of the financial crisis and the downturn.
Redundancies have been kept to a minimum and that is largely as a result of depressed wages over the last six years.
We have all been forced to tighten our belts and hopefully we will start to enjoy the rewards as the economy starts to recover and get back to the position we enjoyed in the immediate years before 2008.
The reality is that we were spending far too much on our public sector and something had to be done to redress the balance. Private wealth and capital create wealth not Government investment, that has been proved time and time again.
In fact you do not have to look far to see the full effect of failing to keep control on Government spending. Many of our neighbours on the Continent are still struggling to recover from the downturn because they have still to get the balance right between public and private.
Here in the UK we are looking at an economy that is growing faster than many other countries in Europe. There is still a long way to go but we are looking in a stronger position than many of our traditional rivals to take full advantage of the economic recovery.
But getting the conditions right for a strong and sustainable economy is not just about Government policies and fiscal strategies it is also about individuals taking personal responsibility.
If we are going to retain our position as an economic power house we all need to play a part in the process.
Hopefully, we have all learned some lessons from what has taken place over the last five years. Government, business and our financial institutions all have a role to play and need to make sure the mistakes of the past are not repeated.
It is important when the boom returns not to slip back into the complacency and bad habits which were at the root of the financial crash of 2008.
But it is also important that all of us adopt the right attitude, we can no longer afford to live in a country where people are not prepared to play an active part in creating a stronger economy.
We all need to be asking ourselves what we can bring to the table as individuals rather than asking what the country should be doing for us.