I’ve got to admit, I’m at a bit of a loss with the Conservative manifesto policy on the sell off of Housing Association stock to existing tenants.
The original right to buy scheme was, for many, a resounding success as it allowed home ownership (and the ability to benefit from the capital appreciation on sale) an aspiration no longer reserve for the wealthy. The long term legacy however has meant that there is an ongoing shortage of housing stock both for those who would own (which helps push up prices) and as the sold off properties were not replaced using the funds generated by the scheme.
So what of Right to Buy 2? Will it be, in the usual time honored fashion of a sequel, a very poor re-hash of the original with a weaker outline (does anyone remember Grease 2? Or should that be has anyone actually seen it??)?
Does property ownership really matter?
On the one hand it does, without a shadow of a doubt, in this green and pleasant land of ours, an Englishman’s home is his castle and all that. We like to own our own homes in the United Kingdom, we like to know we have “invested” in bricks and mortar and how often have you heard of renting as dead money? The theory goes that those with their own homes look after them with more care as to leave them to dilapidate makes about as much sense as flushing a wad of cash down the toilet.
On the other however it doesn’t – it makes the workforce slightly less flexible as to move for work is a huge undertaking when you have a house to sell. Also, I would argue (despite being a home owner myself) your home isn’t an asset as such, more like a liability as it isn’t putting cash into your pocket but taking it out month after month in the form of a mortgage, utility bills, insurances and tax.
Does this sound weird or are you with me on this?
If it sounds weird, there is a section in my webinar which talks about the differences between assets and liabilities which, hopefully will make my comments a bit clearer or you can always email me and I’ll run through the theory behind them with you.
If it doesn’t sound weird then my question is are you a wannabe property magnate who needs a bit of guidance as to how to start? If you do, then please do get in touch as I have a massive treat instore for you. THE KEY TO START THE BALL ROLLING FOR YOU!
Sorry, I’ve digressed.
So, all things considered what do I think of the right to buy scheme?
Well personally I think that people with aspiration these days will always do ok for themselves, as the resources are there for those with a bit of vision to find ways in which to earn some money, and so may not need the leg up a cheap home will bring.
My biggest fear is that all this will end up doing is depleting the rental housing stock further, making it more difficult for those in need to house themselves.
I’m undecided which is a very strange position for me to find myself in……