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The Chartered Institute of Housing is the independent voice for housing and the home of professional standards

CIH comment on quarterly right to buy sales


Figures released today by the Department for Communities and Local Government show that 2,779 homes were sold by councils through the right to buy scheme in England in April to June 2015, while only 307 were started or acquired to replace them using the receipts.

In the year to June, 12,235 homes were sold, while 1,842 were started or acquired to replace them. Since right to buy discounts were increased in April 2012 32,288 homes have been sold, while only 3,644 have been started or acquired to replace them.

Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) deputy chief executive Gavin Smart said: “We understand the government’s aim to encourage people to become home owners, but we’re very concerned about the loss of social rented homes at a time when more and more people are in need of affordable housing.

“Today’s figures make it clear that the number of replacement homes being built is nowhere near the number being sold.  Our research has shown that most authorities only expect to be able to replace half or fewer of the homes they sell under right to buy. It’s always been clear that there would be a lag between homes being sold and homes being built to replace them, but more than three years since right to buy discounts were increased there is mounting evidence that one for one replacement is nowhere near being achieved.”

CIH has called for the government to modify the right to buy scheme to help councils build more homes to replace those sold, such as allowing them to keep all of the receipts rather than handing a proportion over to the Treasury.

The government is proposing to extend the right to buy to housing association tenants and Gavin Smart said that ministers should consider the evidence of how the current scheme is working. He said: “New sales of housing association properties will be in addition to right to buy sales by local authorities and conversions of homes to affordable rents. And of course high-value council homes will be sold to fund the discounts.

“An alternative option for the new right to buy would be giving tenants portable discounts they could use to buy properties of their own choosing, so that social rented housing could be kept and used to help people unable to afford to buy their own homes.”

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  • ?I Julius Ezeagu a member of the Chartered Institute of House(CIH) hereby support the Government proposal for the Right To Buy scheme (RTB). It might sound odd having read the pro and cons of the argument. The Housing Associations (HA) should not just condemn the idea but should endeavour to stand for what the believe in " Providers of Affordable House for household that cannot compete with the market trend. Conditions should be designed to tackle potential lost. Tenants wishing to buy their house, must have lived and paid their rent for a considerable number of years. This rent ( since Housing Association is not a profit Oriented business) should have paid off half the loan borrowed for the building of the properties less all expenses incurred during the period of occupancy. Any money realised from the sales, plus the balance from rent after all expenses, should be able to build or replace the one sold. I can understand where the concern is coming from from. Replacing the sold property one to one. This should not be a reason to deprive legitimate tenants or households who has been in a council or HA properties the right to own their home. The Housing Association should stop being pragmatic or selfish. They should support poor Households to get onto the Housing ladder. They should stand up for what they believe in. My submission.

    Ezeagu, Julius

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