Extending the Right to Buy


“We will extend the Right to Buy to tenants in Housing Associations… It is unfair that they should miss out on a right enjoyed by tenants in local authority homes.” The Conservative party promise to extend the scheme to those renting from Housing Associations.

Currently the Right to Buy Scheme only applies to those residing in local authority properties. This was introduced in the 1980’s so as to allow tenants to purchase their local authority property provided they meet certain conditions. Although Housing Association tenants have a “right to acquire” their properties, the eligibility requirements are more restrictive and at much smaller discounts than those in local authority properties. The intention is to offer the same discounts to Housing Association tenants.

So how will it work? It is anticipated that Housing Association tenants will have to meet the same requirements as those in local authority properties to qualify for Right to Buy, currently there is a minimum requirement of having lived at the property for 5 years (although recent changes in legislation will reduce this to 3 years).

Extending Right to Buy means that a future Conservative government will have to compensate Housing Associations for the difference between the market value of a property and the Right to Buy price. The Conservatives propose to raise those funds by requiring local authorities to sell their most expensive properties as they become vacant.


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