SOME time, perhaps in the next few months, perhaps in the next few years, a decision will be taken in a meeting room in the City of London that mortgage lending needs to be reduced.
This could cost you a long-awaited home-move or prevent your child stepping on to the bottom rung of the housing ladder.
But those making the decision will not be in the high-street banks, nor will they be people you have elected.
Instead they are a group of people, nine men and a solitary woman, at the Bank of England.
The Financial Policy Committee (FPC), made up of Bank officials and former senior figures in financial services, is among the most important of a panoply of new bodies established by the Government to stop a repeat of the financial crisis.
Its public face and chairman is the governor of the Bank of England. Its job is to flag up emerging risks to the financial system and to use its powers to head these off. Whether it has the clout to take on public opinion and perhaps politicians on an issue as emotionally charged as the housing market has yet to be tested.
The FPC is modelled on the Bank's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), which sets interest rates ostensibly free of political interference.
Formally vested with powers only in April, the FPC's status has yet to be established and there have already been complaints that the Chancellor of the Exchequer has removed potentially troublesome members and restricted its powers.
Meanwhile, house prices are spiralling upwards, albeit the rises are concentrated in markets such as London and north-east Scotland, helped by rock-bottom interest rates and mortgage subsidy schemes, giving an illusion of rising wealth at a time of falling real wages.
Governments on both sides of the Border have tried to help first-time buyers on to the housing ladder in the guise of encouraging house-building and boosting the economy, assuring sceptics that increased supply will mitigate price rises.
New Bank of England governor Mark Carney, head-hunted from Canada's central bank by Chancellor George Osborne, has issued assurances that Threadneedle Street is aware of unsustainable credit and house-price growth and will be monitoring it closely.
The FPC, which next meets on September 18, could demand that banks put more money aside to cover the risk of bad debt, restricting the supply of new mortgages. This could be targeted at home loans in general. Or it could aim at a certain part of that market - those with low deposits.
But any move is unlikely to please a Government with plans to direct billions of pounds more in subsidies towards homebuyers in coming months. Anything that threatens to dampen house prices near the 2015 General Election might also be regarded with some dismay.
Dr Carney was hand-picked by the Chancellor and lured here with a generous pay and benefits package.
Yet the future authority of the institution he heads could rest on his willingness put the squeeze on the housing market just as his political benefactor seeks re-election.
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