Garden Court Housing Team responds to Government consultation on Reform of Social Housing Allocation

Tuesday 26 March 2024

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The Garden Court Chambers Housing Law Team states:

“In the recent past, local authorities (with the support of central government) have sought to reduce social housing waiting lists by expanding the provision of social housing. Now, however, central government policies operate to frustrate the expansion of social housing. The present administration has reduced the proportion of local authorities’ receipts from right-to-buy sales, which (together with a much broader framework of reducing local authorities’ funding) reduces housing revenue accounts.

The Government’s strong commitment to right-to-buy means that even where new social housing has been successfully delivered, it can (like the award-winning scheme in Norwich) be sold off within a few years of completion. These new proposals would further ‘residualise’ the dwindling stock of social housing, and would have a particular impact on households with protected characteristics.

Given that there are many local authorities which do not face particularly severe pressures on their stock – and we are aware of many migrant households in (for example) the north of England who have obtained social housing relatively quickly – we call on the Government to demonstrate whether there is a reasonable foundation for implementing this scheme on a nationwide basis."

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