Right-to-buy scheme WILL deplete social housing; Tories are taking us for fools

These Tories are trying to take us all for fools.

Communities secretary Greg Clark (who?) reckons councils will have to replace any housing association property that is sold under the Conservative Government’s latest plan.

But this won’t work, because the plan is to offer a discount on the purchase of each property, of up to 70 per cent.

That means councils, who are being starved of money by – guess who? – the Conservative Government, will be either unable to replace 70 per cent of the lost accommodation or will be forced into serious debt.

Don’t be deceived by this blatant lie – it’s all part of the Tory plan to deplete social housing.

The new communities secretary, Greg Clark, has insisted government plans to provide a right to buy for 1.3 million housing association tenants will not lead to a fall in overall provision of social housing in England.

The measure is due to be included in the Queen’s speech on Wednesday and Clark defended the policy saying “consistently, over many years, nearly 86% want to own their home and just because you have signed a social tenancy should not mean you sign away your aspiration to own your own home”.

Ministers have insisted that social housing will not fall because councils will be expected to replace any housing association property that is sold. The new properties are due to be provided by the enforced sale of more expensive council-owned property when the tenancy falls vacant. Housing association tenants who have lived in a property for three years will be entitled to seek a discount on the purchase of the property of up to 70%.

Clark said there would not be a net fall in affordable property. “Where the flat is sold to the existing tenant it is not lost, it does not evaporate, and it is sold to someone that has means to pay for it, so then what is released in terms of the sale can then build an extra home – so it is adding to the housing stock. Every housing association property that is sold will be replaced one for one for a new property, so it is not only allowing people to meet their housing aspiration, but to increase the housing stock as well.”

Source: Right-to-buy scheme ‘will not deplete social housing stock’ | Society | The Guardian

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10 thoughts on “Right-to-buy scheme WILL deplete social housing; Tories are taking us for fools

  1. M de Mowbray

    It’s all part of Tory New Feudalism: Robber Barons get everything, everyone else gets cleared off their land and out of their homes, deprived of rights, law, health care and education, then forced to work till they die.

  2. Florence

    So we have this attack on all forms of social housing (and I wonder if any of the “SODS” will actually be able to afford a mortgage) a pie-in-the-sky promise for more homes, and a record number of social tenants being lined up for eviction as a result of the bedroom tax, council tax, and benefit cap, and all social landlords unable to rent out their 3 bed properties also because of the benefit cap.

    What could possibly go wrong?

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      SODS? That’s a bit insulting, isn’t it? What do the letters represent?

      1. joanna may

        one question I haven’t yet seen an answer to, how can the government sell what doesn’t belong to them like housing association properties? or am I missing something?

  3. Jane Young

    It’s a shame that basic adding up isn’t a pre-requisite of being a cabinet minister in a Tory Government. They clearly think we’re fools – but it seems it is they who are the greater fools!!

  4. paulrutherford8

    Of course you have to be a tenant for quite some time before getting a discount of 70%, so it may not be as popular as the tories think.
    In the first round of council house sell-offs, many of the houses sold were unsellable later, due to the fact that they were on estates which ‘regular’ buyers didn’t want to live in.
    So quite a few of them are now in the hands of private landlords, who rent them out at higher rents than the LA property next door.
    Prospective buyers ought to be targetted with the truth… also lots of Maggie’s buyers found insurance and repairs problematic.
    Hmmm.

  5. Timro

    Grant Shapps claimed that while Cameron was Prime Minister every council house sold cut-price to its tenant would be replaced by a new house. Over the last five years for every TEN council houses sold only ONE got built! So my bet is that this one-for-one policy will pan out similarly with far more social homes being sold than built. In any case even if the pool of social housing was kept statically the same size this won’t increase the number of housing association and council houses available to rent, which is really what ought to be happening.

  6. Jason Horton

    Didn’t selling off the council houses cause a huge inflation in housing prices last time? When the bubble burst the housing market ground to a halt. Central government may expect local councils to build more homes but they can’t afford it and even if they could they’re probably keen to spend the money on essential services like firemen, a police force, libraries, elderly care, that kind of stuff. I’m sure they’ll take the money from council house sales and not replace them at all and we’ll be left in the same mess that we were last time.

  7. Joan Edington

    From my memory, when Thatcher started this sell-off, vast numbers of the buyers didn’t really want to stay on in the houses. They bought them at a snip, sold on at a profit and went looking for another rent. New houses were not built, so the social housing shortage grew.

    Many housing associations were only formed by councils selling off their entire housing stock because it was too costly to run. I can’t see them building replacements for HA houses sold when they rarely replaced their own.

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