Planning and Housing

24.11.17

Social housing sales rise by 10% as Right to Buy takes hold

The government has released figures showing that 13,400 social housing properties were sold last year under Right to Buy, an increase of 10% on 2015-16.

There was a total of 23,100 sales of social housing across both local authorities and private registered providers (PRPs), which accounts for 0.6% of the four million in the UK.

Across the one-year period, local authority sales through Right to Buy had an average discount of 43% on the selling price – a discount of around 16 points.

PRPs (housing associations) were also involved in a pilot voluntary Right to Buy scheme which was responsible for around 275 sales across five associations.

Gavin Smart, deputy chief executive at the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH), said the figures were worrying because many people on lower incomes can only afford social rent.

“If the government is going to meet its new target to deliver 300,000 homes a year, councils will have to play a major part,” Smart explained.

“The chancellor’s decision to relax borrowing caps for councils in high demand areas is very positive, but we hope to see the government build on this move so that we see a return to the levels of council house building we need.

“Ministers could also take action to help councils build more homes to replace those sold through right to buy, by allowing them to keep 100 per cent of the receipts for example.”

In September, communities secretary Sajid Javid announced that he was bringing forward the release of a green paper on social housing which he said would help the government to return to a time “when social housing was valued”.

Top image: Empato

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Comments

Cllr David Sheard   27/11/2017 at 13:51

“Ministers could also take action to help councils build more homes to replace those sold through right to buy, by allowing them to keep 100 per cent of the receipts for example.” Should be 100% of the value as government give discounts on houses they don't own.

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