Right to Buy Criticised by Ex Civil Service Chief
By |Published On: 1st June 2015|

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Right to Buy Criticised by Ex Civil Service Chief

By |Published On: 1st June 2015|

This article is an external press release originally published on the Landlord News website, which has now been migrated to the Just Landlords blog.

A former civil service chief has criticised the Right to Buy policy, saying that it will not solve the housing crisis.

Lord Kerslake will allegedly condemn the Conservative Government’s housing plan in his first House of Lords speech next week.

The Government has pledged to replace every property that is sold to housing association tenants with a new affordable home.

However, the Labour Party and housing associations have attacked the policy.

Right to Buy Criticised by Ex Civil Service Chief

Right to Buy Criticised by Ex Civil Service Chief

The scheme was introduced in the Queen’s Speech last week, which will give 1.3m housing association tenants in England the right to buy their homes at discounts of up to £104,000 in London and over £77,000 elsewhere.

The Government has said that housing associations will be compensated with funds raised by forcing local authorities to sell off their most valuable housing stock when it becomes vacant.

Ministers believe that this will ensure affordable homes are replaced, but some housing associations have threatened to sue the Government if they have to sell their assets.

Lord Kerslake comments: “I will raise my serious concerns about the policy in its current form. I think it’s wrong in principle and wrong in practise, and it won’t help tackle the urgent need to build more housing and more affordable housing in this country, particularly in London.”1 

The crossbench peer was the head of the civil service and until February he was the most senior official at the Department of Communities and Local Government.

Brandon Lewis, housing minister, says: “It is right that as high value council homes become empty, they should be sold to fund new affordable house building in the same area.

“The proposals in the Queen’s Speech will do that and more, extending Right to Buy level discounts to over a million housing association tenants, with the homes sold replaced on a one-for-one basis.”1

Labour says that Lord Kerslake’s words are “damning and telling.”1

Emma Reynolds, shadow housing minister, argues: “Labour supports people who want to buy their own home, but housing experts have lined up to say the Government’s proposed policy is uncosted and will lead to fewer affordable homes.

“The Government broke their promise to replace homes sold through Right to Buy on a one-for-one basis over the last five years.

“No one will believe their promises now and more of the same will lead to an increase in the number of families desperate for a home at a price they can afford.”1

1 http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-32952890

About the Author: Em Morley (she/they)

Em is the Content Marketing Manager for Just Landlords, with over five years of experience writing for insurance and property websites. Together with the knowledge and expertise of the Just Landlords underwriting team, Em aims to provide those in the property industry with helpful resources. When she’s not at her computer researching and writing property and insurance guides, you’ll find her exploring the British countryside, searching for geocaches.

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