Labour will scrap Right to Buy if elected

Wed, 28 Sep 2016

The Right to Buy scheme in England will be suspended if Labour wins the next election, it has been announced at a party conference in Liverpool.

However, it has not been revealed how long the suspension will last for, with a possibility that it will be permanent.

Introduced back in 1980 by Conservative Margaret Thatcher, there have been more than one million homes transferred to the private sector through Right to Buy. However, sold houses are not being replaced at the same rate they are being sold, failing to meet the pledge to replace them "one-for-one".

In the second quarter of 2016, there were 3,362 homes sold through the scheme, up from 3,276 in the first quarter. Meanwhile, local authorities started to build, or had acquired, 422 homes in the second quarter, down from 715 in the first quarter.

This summer, the Right to Buy scheme in Scotland was ended by Nicola Sturgeon, because it wasn't affordable for the nation, with the Welsh government now following suit.

Theresa Pearce, Labour's shadow housing minister, said: "Following the examples set by Wales and Scotland, we will suspend the Right to Buy. The right to buy can only make sense in a time of surplus; in a time of shortage it makes no sense at all.

"The difference between us and the Tories is they think housing is about property whereas we know it's about homes, communities and life chances."

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