The passage at Stage 3 of the Housing (Scotland) Bill which will scrap the right to buy has been welcomed today as a key part of efforts to tackle waiting lists for council homes.

Two years after the bill receives Royal Assent, the right to buy will be abolished for all local authority and housing association tenants, having already been withdrawn for first time tenants since March 2011.

The passage of the Bill thereby brings to an end one of Mrs Thatcher’s flagship policies.  Many former council homes bought under the right to buy end up in the private rented sector, leading to higher benefit costs than would otherwise be necessary.

The abolition of the right to buy is expected to protect up to 15,500 homes in the socially rented sector which would otherwise be lost over the next decade.

Commenting, SNP MSP Maureen Watt said:

“The right to buy is an idea that has had its day and has seen 455,000 properties taken out of the social sector while 184,887 people were on local authority housing waiting lists last year.

“That is a situation which is simply not sustainable and ending the right to buy is an important step forward.

“It will ensure that council homes are no longer lost to the socially rented sector and help to bring down waiting lists as more affordable homes are built.

“The SNP Government is on track to deliver 30,000 affordable homes by March 2016, with 1,324 council homes built in 2013/14 alone – the highest number since a new generation of council house construction was kickstarted in 2009. In contrast, the previous Labour/LibDem administration built just six council homes during the four years of their last term in office.

“I am confident that with the right to buy coming to an end, even greater progress in tackling waiting lists for social housing will now be possible.”


Jamie Black
2014-06-26 05:59

A disaster for Scotland and anyone who aspires to own their home and live their retirment without having to rent for ever more.

All delivered courtesy of the SNP who wanted to remove a flagship Tory policy simply because it was a Tory policy. Simply because the SNP could not scratch under the surface and find out why housing stock was lost. Keep the low and medium earners forever in a life of rent – that’s progress eh?
2014-06-28 08:31

Yeah, much better that people pay their hard earned wages to a mortgage company which Hoovers cash liquidity away from our communities which once upon a time supported local commerce and enterprise.
Better look after these financial behemoths so enough wealth trickles down to the poor.
I mean, what can possibly go wrong when financiers are handed the wealth of the country and deregulated in their responsibilitie  s?

Never mind, keep telling the people they are inferior if they don’t own property. Get them in debt, and their souls belong to the system. Lambs to the slaughter.

2014-06-28 00:45


Another idea that will keep people in homes without the worry of being destitute if mortgage rates spiral or job losses occur.
2014-06-29 16:31

The number of people requiring Social Housing has grown exponentially. Scotland, as a country who wish to encourage immigration for people who wish to work here and contribute to society, needs to give consideration to being able to house them.

Like others, I’m sure, everyone knows people whose lives were turned upside down when the crash happened? Those I know, and they number more than a few, who have gone through the heartbreak of losing their home – not one of them would ever consider returning to a mortgage (lottery wins aside). I do not agree with an argument that it stops people from getting onto the ownership ladder, the selling prices were lower than that of a new car in some cases.
2014-06-30 03:31

The operative word is choice. If rents are cheap, it regulates demand for mortgages. It produces a much healthier equilibrium.
When you create insatiable demand to own property, it is inevitable that demand will exceed supply, and that drives up the price.
Add to that a mortgage industry which values the property and tells you what it’s worth, and you have everything in place to get sky high prices and desperate people and mortgage companies making billions.
There is more… The insatiable demand blinds people to the quality of construction. Neoliberalism delivers the cheapest forms of construction sold for the maximum possible profit to people driven to be property owners.
Government is happy because people are employed, profits generate taxes, but the substance and quality of our housing stock is in freefall, with cheap crap grossly overpriced. We have a bad system with foxes running the hen house.

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