UK reinvigorated Right to Buy programme hailed a success

A reinvigorated Right to Buy programme in the UK has created nearly 40,000 new home owners in the last three years, according to new figures published by the government.

Housing Minister Brandon Lewis said it is further evidence of how government-led efforts to help aspiring home owners are working, adding that there were 3,644 new starts and acquisitions since the Right to Buy was reinvigorated in 2012.

He explained that this means that the 3,054 additional homes sold in the first year of the scheme are already being replaced on a one for one basis nationally. ‘For years, the discounts available under the Right to Buy were left to dwindle, denying thousands of people the opportunity to own their own home,’ he explained.

‘This reinvigorated scheme has turned that around, and means nearly 40,000 people have been able to buy the home they love, many of whom might otherwise never have had the chance to become homeowners. On top of that, it’s getting homes built, with councils replacing the additional homes sold on a one for one basis,’ he added.

The data also shows that since the reinvigoration of the Right to Buy scheme, nearly £964 million in sales receipts are being re-invested into building new homes, levering a further £2.2 billion of investment over the next three years. This means that in total, over £3.2 billion will be raised to invest in affordable house building as a result of Right to Buy.

A breakdown of the figures shows that in the three months to June, some 2,779 households bought their homes under Right to Buy. Local authorities received approximately £223 million from Right to Buy sales, 5% higher than the £212 million in the same quarter of 2014 to 2015.

Lewis also pointed out that since 2010 the government has introduced a range of measures to support aspiring homeowners to buy their own home. In addition to reinvigorating the Right to Buy, this includes the Help to Buy scheme, which has enabled nearly 120,000 people to buy with a fraction of the deposit they would normally require.

Overall, since 2010 232,000 households have been helped to purchase a home through government backed schemes including Help to Buy and Right to Buy.

On top of this, the government has also pledged to build 200,000 new Starter Homes, which will be available to young first time buyers under 40 at a 20% discount, while a new Help to Buy ISA will help aspiring home owners to save up a deposit for a new home.