Government will take further steps to reinvigorate the Right to Buy in 2014

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The Government will take further steps to reinvigorate the Right to Buy in 2014 so more hard-working tenants can aspire to buy their home, Communities Secretary Eric Pickles announced today.

The maximum discount for a house will increase from 60% to 70% of its value, and the £75,000 cap will start increasing in line with the Consumer Price Index rate of inflation.

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Mr Pickles said the changes showed the government’s rock solid support for aspiration, and would ensure Right to Buy becomes a realistic New Year’s resolution for thousands of social tenants across the country.

The Right to Buy gives something back to families who worked hard, paid their rent and played by the rules. It allows them to do up their home, change their front door, improve their garden – without getting permission from the council.

It gives people a sense of pride and ownership not just in their home, but in their street and neighbourhood, helping to build strong families and stable mixed communities.

Since 2011 the government has helped almost 50,000 households onto the housing ladder – over 13,400 social tenants through the Right to Buy and over 36,000 through Help to Buy and earlier schemes.

Mr Pickles said it was clear evidence that wherever people are in the housing market, there is help on hand for hard-working, aspiring homeowners.

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said:

“For years the Right to Buy was slowly strangled, with a miserly cap on discounts killing the prospect of home ownership for most social tenants.

“We don’t think governments should be in the business of vetoing aspiration. That’s why we reinvigorated the Right Buy. Eighteen months later and with over 13,400 hard-working tenants taking up the offer, it’s clear the public shares our view.

“But we want to go further, that’s why we will soon be increasing the maximum discount and ensuring it continues to rise with inflation, so more social tenants can make Right to Buy their New Year’s resolution for 2014.

“We’ll also continue to plough the cash from additional sales back into delivering new affordable homes for rent, which will soon help us reach the fastest rate of affordable housebuilding for twenty years.”

Today’s move will extend the government’s commitment to help hard-working tenants and build more homes, which the Chancellor set out in the Autumn Statement. This included:

•  Introducing a Right to Move for social tenants who need to relocate for a new job or training

•  Establishing new Right to Buy agents who will guide people through the buying process, and providing £100million to establish a  fund to improve access to mortgage finance;

•  A £1billion six-year investment programme to unlock new large housing sites that will deliver around 250,000 homes; and

•  Allowing councils to bid for up to £300million of additional borrowing against their housing revenue accounts to provide new affordable housing for their local community.

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