Prime Minister announces plans for housing association Right to Buy

10 June 2022

This week, the Prime Minister confirmed his plans to extend the Right to Buy to housing association tenants. While there is as yet very little detail on the government’s plans, the proposals confirmed so far are:

  • 2.5 million housing association tenants will be given the right to buy in an extension of the current Right to Buy scheme.
  • The government intends to work closely with the housing association sector on the design of the scheme.
  • Any initial scheme would be capped to ensure it is affordable within existing government budgets.
  • A commitment from the Prime Minister to build replacement social homes for each one sold, with Michael Gove suggesting the government would aim for like for like replacements.

Media reports have suggested that the cap on the scheme would be set at £500m, but this was not mentioned in the Prime Minister’s speech. Reports that the scheme would be piloted have also not yet been confirmed.

In our response to the speech, we’ve been clear that housing associations’ priority is providing social homes for people who need them, and that we’re concerned that extending the Right to Buy would result in a loss of social housing. While the commitment to like-for-like replacements is welcome, we’ve highlighted that the pilots have shown that this is not possible, leading to a net loss in social housing.

We’ve been in conversations with ministers and officials about these proposals, and are sharing the sector’s concerns and pressing for more detail. We will continue our regular contact with senior government stakeholders and will update our members as soon as we know more.

Who to speak to

Marie Chadwick, Policy Leader