Universal basic affordability


The affordability crisis is a new phenomenon for humanity. We are at our expense of the ecological footprint and the ‘earth overshoot day’ is earlier than the previous year. In short, we are with more people, all of whom want a higher quality of living standard while our surface area to obtain these materials does not increase.

Now there are certain movements, groups, lifestyles that take it upon themselves to reduce their footprint or to consume less. However, there are a number of crucial topics that cannot be economized on, such as housing, clothing, transport.

In short, we are stuck.

How does it work now?

In other words, what are groups doing right now to increase their affordability? An overview per category;


  • Actively pursue a lifestyle to reduce the ecological footprint
  • Investing in products that pay for themselves (i.e. solar panels, tiny houses)



  • Provide subsidies to incentivize (increasing) affordability
  • Increase excise duties tackling inefficiency harming affordability
  • Internal optimizations reducing failed projects thus lowering tax waste

This all seems very nice but assumes that there is already capacity among the population. And that it is, therefore, possible to play with that capacity to create more support.

The problem

The problem is simple. A large part of the population has no capacity at all and lives almost from month to month. People in the minima have and will never build buffers if almost every euro that comes in has to be spent on fixed expenses.

This is accompanied by remaining saddled with old less efficient products. In short, many solutions are aimed at the disadvantaged, but where is the attention for the unprivileged?

The solution

Hèhè, finally the solution! A universal basic income. But also universal basic expenses. We will explain this briefly.

Universal basic income (UBI)

Much has been written about the UBI like this, this and experiments are being conducted to see what effect it has. The Netherlands already has a social safety net (we leave ff in the middle whether it is good), but many other countries do not. The UBI will therefore suddenly function as a social safety net and will largely solve all socio-economic or social problems in one fell swoop.

In other words, the effect on the Netherlands will remain relatively limited compared to other countries and may even scour with the current social safety net. So there is still something missing, the other side of the coin. We introduce …

The universal basic expenses (UBE)

All (fixed) expenses will then be a percentage of the income. For example, the rent of the house … 15%, Gas, water, electricity (GWL) … 2%, accountant for the tax return … 0.5%. By making it as a percentage it can go in any direction, but it will not exclude anyone from getting what you need.

What we are achieving with this is to permanently narrow the gap between rich and poor. The UBI & UBE combined we call the Universal Basic Affordability (UBA)


Although universal basic income will certainly impact many countries. In countries with a welfare state, a different approach is required to solve the affordability crisis. The universal basic hatching would offer a solution for these countries. It just needs to be calculated.


Time: 6 hours
Written by: Mariëlle Pax & Robert Velhorst.