“From right to buy to buy to let”

January 15, 2014

Greater London Assembly Member Tom Copley has produced a useful report on  a neglected aspect of the impact of Thatcher’s “right to buy” policy (“From Right to Buy to Buy to Let”)[1]. There has been some academic research which has pointed to the trend whereby ex-Council homes when sold on by the tenants who bought them, have been snapped up by Buy to Let landlords. Where the tenants who live in these properties are recipients of Housing Benefit (HB), then the HB paid is higher than would have been the case if the property had remained under the ownership of a local Council. This is one reason for the increase in the national HB bill, although we do not know the exact scale of the problem. Of course, even if a private tenant in one of these ex-Council homes is not on HB the rents in such properties will, in any case, be much higher than they would be if the property had not been sold under RTB. Read the rest of this entry »

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