A new guide to provide clarity on local authority property investments has been published by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA).
The guidance makes it clear that councils should not borrow more than they need to in order to purely make profit.
Don Peebles, head of policy and technical at CIPFA, said: 'In a landscape still reeling from a decade of austerity, we would not expect commercial investments in property to be abandoned in full. However, we must ensure that responsible decisions are made with transparency and financial sustainability in mind.
'In the end, the most important consideration is how taxpayers will be affected by decisions made at the top, and they should not be left in the dark about the process.'