What they did
In some supermarkets in London, an avocado is on sale for £10.38 and a block of cheese for £36.33. Sound ridiculous? That’s what would happen to the price of food if it were to rise at the same rate as house prices in its borough.
Gordon and Graham launched a campaign called "Priced out London" to bring attention to the rapid house-price inflation in the capital. They made stickers for products and surreptitiously displayed them in Tesco stores.
Why did you launch the campaign?
We sit next to one another and found ourselves with a few free hours. We decided to put them to good use by hacking something culturally relevant.
What did you do?
We’d been talking about house prices and started looking at the rates of inflation across different boroughs. We regularly talk about how we can’t afford to buy property in London but don’t quite understand the scale of the problem because the numbers don’t make much sense.
What does a 980% price increase look like? To demonstrate the ridiculous levels of house-price inflation over the past two decades in London, we thought it would be interesting to show how much everyday essentials would cost if they had increased at the same rate.
After hours of Photoshop, we guerrillad a few Tesco stores conveniently located near the offices of big publications. We didn’t get caught but a woman stood behind us in one and said, "Ten quid for an avocado? Those hipsters’ breakfasts are fucked".
What do you want to happen as a result of the campaign?
Create awareness and add to the conversation about how badly our generation are being priced out of the housing market. But, critically, we wanted to give people the tools to better understand the numbers.
We wanted to turn the facts into messages. It’s basic behavioural economics – create messages that help people understand the issue so they can find a way to act. Where has the work been covered? The Huffington Post, Metro, The Sun, the Daily Mail, BuzzFeed, ITV News, publications in Thailand, Iran and China.
Hilariously, a property company called Urban has used the work as a way to market its "cheaper" properties.
What’s next for the campaign?
This took a few hours to execute. We have helped people better understand but we haven’t helped them act – that’s food for thought for the next quiet day