Right to buy homes must be replaced on a like to like basis and must not deter private investment in affordable housing

Ian Fletcher, Director of Policy at the British Property Federation, comments, on Boris Johnson’s housing announcements,

“While the extension of right to buy to housing associations may support more people into home ownership, the homes bought must be replaced on a like-for-like basis. Without this, the availability of affordable homes will continue to be stretched at a time when we urgently need more stock, not less. The initiative also fundamentally misses the core issue, helping people into social housing and reducing the waiting list. Extending right to buy runs the risk of exacerbating this challenge by diverting government funding away from new affordable housing supply.  There is also the not inconsiderable issue about the legal framework for all of this and how property owned by independent organisations is going to be sold with hopefully their agreement.

 “The affordable housing sector urgently needs more sources of funding to deliver the 140,000 affordable homes the country needs. New private capital, both equity and debt, has started flowing into the sector attracted by its stability and returns. It is important this announcement does not risk undermining the interest in investment in the sector and further reducing supply.”