Was Margaret Thatcher right to introduce the right to buy council houses in the 1980s?

Discussion in 'Property Market News and Trends' started by Longterminvestor, Jan 2, 2018.

  1. Longterminvestor

    Longterminvestor Active Member

    Looking back it was the right to buy council houses which lit the blue touch paper for the UK home ownership market. However, it has decimated the social housing sector, so, in hindsight, was Margaret Thatcher correct or are we now paying the price?
     
  2. diyhelp

    diyhelp Active Member

    The problem was that successive governments failed to invest in social housing and this is why we have problems today. Starting the home ownership revolution was a good move in my view.
     
  3. nmb

    nmb Well-Known Member

    Home ownership and social housing are two totally different subjects - while the Tories seem to get all of the grief, lets not forget that a "socialist" government had many years in power since then under Tony Blair. What did they do about social housing spending?
     
  4. Longterminvestor

    Longterminvestor Active Member

    I totally agree, other countries have managed to encourage homeownership in the private sector while also maintaining levels of social housing for those who need it. Successive UK governments have failed to invest sufficient funds into social housing hence the problems we have today.
     
  5. kchiggs

    kchiggs Member

    The act that thatcher passed actually made it illegal for LHA to reinvest the proceeds in social housing. If it hadn't they would have gained more cost-efficient stock (as technology moved on allowing better results) while the right-to-buy tenants would have been able to keep their homes., with the surplus going to the central government.

    This why German social housing is passive(heating bills are effectively zero) solar panels on every roof. (It's easiest for the unemployed to shift their energy consumption to supply since there not doing anything, then night-workers, then everybody else)

    Nowadays since the (german) social public housing orgs were willing to fund test projects no-one else was they get a steady stream of patent royalties form private and foreign social schemes offsetting the cost of provision
     
  6. kchiggs

    kchiggs Member

    They scrapped the right to buy for Scotland and Wales. Gave FCA authority over English/NI schemes in '05 to cut down on mis-selling.

    Though to be fair Sir Robert Peel had his liberal-conservative breakways in coalition when the original policies were passed. So it's really Thatcherism rather than Conservatism (In fact the policy was not conservative literally, since it was a radical departure from the status-quo) that is to blame/credit depending on your poltical leanings. However the distinction between the two is lost on most people.

    I also don't think Right-to-buy is compatible with council tax so to be effective you'd have to replace council tax with an alternative.
     
  7. realdeals

    realdeals Active Member

    I dont know whats its like in England but in Scotland the local councils are very keen on solar power for council houses.
     
  8. kchiggs

    kchiggs Member

    Are they building houses powers entirely by solar or other renewable energy? That's the standard now.
     
  9. lookinginvest

    lookinginvest Member

    As far as I am aware, new social housing in Scotland does not contain solar or renewable energy by default. Then again, to be honest I have not read about an increase in social housing numbers in Scotland. The majority of “new social housing” available to the council now revolves around housing associations which were purely and simply set up to milk the various grants available from the UK government.
     
  10. kchiggs

    kchiggs Member

    I didn't think any did. UK is way behind.
     
  11. Longterminvestor

    Longterminvestor Active Member

    There are a growing number of social housing projects which now include solar panels, etc but overall they are a tiny minority of the overall social housing market. It is a shame in some ways as technology associated with renewable energy sources has come on in leaps and bounds in recent times. Many people still associate these markets with the inefficient products of years ago. Maybe time to educate the wider public of the benefits?
     
  12. FWL

    FWL Member

    It seems that the further North you move in the UK the less Margaret Thatcher was liked - there has never been a more diversive figure in UK politics before or since. Did she do the right thing for the UK property market? History will show that she kicked started it but at the expense of the social housing sector?
     
  13. diyhelp

    diyhelp Active Member

    There was no balance and never has been - its either all about home ownership or all about social housing. This is why the social housing sector is in the mess it is today - different political parties have very different agendas which is why strategies are reset every time we have a change in government. WHo pays the price? The UK public in one way or another.
     
  14. realdeals

    realdeals Active Member

    When you consider how well-developed the UK mortgage market is, does it not surprise you that we do not have more full term fixed interest rate mortgage packages? These are the norm in the US.
     
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