Welsh government introduces bill to abolish right to buy
The Welsh Government’s proposal to end the right of social housing tenants to buy their own homes started its journey through the National Assembly for Wales on Monday 13th March, the rights to buy will be abolished across the housing sector, including housing associations and council homes.
The Welsh Government aims to protect the Welsh stock of social housing from further reduction, ensuring it is available to provide safe, secure and affordable housing for people who are unable to take advantage of the housing market to buy or rent a home.
The Bill will provide for the Right to Buy, the Preserved Right to Buy and the Right to Acquire for tenants of local authorities and registered social landlords to be abolished after a period of at least one year following Royal Assent.
Prior to the Bill’s introduction, Communities Secretary Carl Sargeant said: “Our social housing is a valuable resource, but it is under considerable pressure. The size of the stock has declined significantly since 1980 when the Right to Buy was introduced. The number of sales is equivalent to 45% of the social housing stock in 1981. This has resulted in people in housing need, many of whom are vulnerable, waiting longer to access a home they can afford.
“The Bill supports the Welsh Government’s wider aims of a more prosperous and fairer Wales, helping to tackle poverty by protecting our stock of social housing from further reduction.
“I recognise the proposal affects existing tenants and we will ensure tenants are made aware of the effect of the Bill in good time before abolition takes place. The Bill will require the Welsh Government to publish information, which social landlords in turn must provide to every affected tenant, within two months of the Bill receiving Royal Assent.
“We have set an ambitious target of creating 20,000 affordable homes in this term of government. Alongside social housing this will include schemes such as Help to Buy and Rent to Own to enable people on modest incomes to own their own homes. We are supporting low cost home ownership and we are expanding the social housing stock. Abolishing the Right to Buy will complement these other actions we are taking in order to support people in housing need.”
The UK government has taken a different approach to the other consituent countries of the UK, announcing just last month plans to extend the policy to even more homes which is currently expected.
Source of information gov.wales