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03 June 2015

Minister acts to protect Wales’ social housing

The Welsh Government has today announced that it is taking action on the Right to Buy in order to protect Wales’ social housing, following a consultation which showed support for the plans.

Commenting on the announcement, Stuart Ropke, Group Chief Executive of Community Housing Cymru said:

“We welcome the news from Welsh Government that they have listened to concerns and confirmed they immediately intend to halve the discount offered and plan to abolish Right to Buy. In doing so, they will be taking action to protect Wales’ precious social housing stock and helping to tackle our housing crisis.”

Welsh Government’s announcement comes following a consultation on the proposal of scrapping the Right to Buy. The views and concerns from local authorities, housing associations and, most importantly, social housing tenants, revealed that 76% supported the reduction of the maximum sales discount from £16,000 to £8,000. 63% were in favour of developing legislation to end the Right to Buy. A resounding 94% of respondents believe that Welsh Government should help people whose needs could not be met by the housing market and three quarters felt that action should be taken to protect Wales’ social housing stock.

Welsh Government is taking immediate action to reduce the discount this summer and has started the development of legislation to end Right to Buy for consideration by the Government in the next Assembly term.

The Right to Buy and Right to Acquire allows eligible social housing tenants to buy their council or housing association home at a discount of up to £16,000. Under Right to Buy, 138,548 homes have already been sold off and lost to the social housing sector in Wales since its introduction in 1981.

Click here to read the press release on Welsh Government's website.