Thomas Bridge 11 August 2016

Councils call for urgent reform of Right to Buy rules

Councils call for urgent reform of Right to Buy rules image

Councils have called for an overhaul of Right to Buy rules, after figures showed they are struggling to build new homes to replace those sold off.

The Local Government Association said 12,246 council homes were sold off to tenants under Right to Buy in England last year, with just 2,055 replacements started by councils.

It said councils would struggle to replace the 66,000 properties expected to be sold off by 2020 without an overhaul of discounts and sale receipts.

The LGA is calling for tenant discounts to be set locally to reflect local house prices and called for councils to retain 100% of receipts from any council home sold off.

LGA senior vice chair, Cllr Nick Forbes, said: ‘If we are to stand a real chance of solving our housing crisis, councils need the funding and powers to replace any homes sold under RTB quickly and reinvest in building more of the genuine affordable homes our communities desperately need.’

A Department for Communities and Local Government spokesperson said: ‘There is a rolling three-year deadline for local authorities to deliver an additional affordable home and so far they have delivered well within their sales profile.

‘However, we have always been clear that if local authorities don’t start building replacement homes within the three-year deadline, then we will step in and build them for them.’

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