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Tory Right to Buy has cost taxpayers £3.5 BILLION over six years

TAXPAYERS have forked out £3.5 billion to subsidise the sale of council houses in the last six years.

In 2012, the Tories and their Liberal Democrat collaborators raised the level of taxpayer subsidy of council house sales to a maximum of £100,000 per house.

The figures are contained in an analysis by the Local Government Association, the national body representing local authorities.

Many of the sold-off council houses have ended up being acquired by private landlords, who exploit them for profit.

Labour responded to the analysis by committing itself to “the biggest council housing programme in 30 years.”

Shadow housing spokesman John Healey said: “In the midst of a housing crisis, the Conservatives’ wasteful right to buy is indefensible.

“Since 2010, communities have lost 170,000 council homes, while the number of younger home-owners has fallen by a million. The Conservatives’ approach to housing is failing on all fronts.

“Labour will suspend the right to buy and start the biggest council-house-building programme in 30 years. We will back first-time buyers on ordinary incomes by building 100,000 discounted FirstBuy homes, targeting help to buy and giving local people ‘first dibs’ on new homes built in their area.”

Council housing stock has fallen by 174,000 units since 2012, when the Tories increased the discount on sales, with taxpayers footing the bill.

Labour said the increase in discounts had sparked a social housing “fire sale,” while pointing out that the number of people under 45 who own their homes has fallen by more than a million since 2010.

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