Welsh council blocks right to buy

A Welsh council is attempting to combat a shortage in affordable housing by blocking the right-to-buy policy.

Swansea City Council can suspend the policy under new powers passed to the National Assembly for Wales which allow councils to opt out of the scheme, with the Welsh government making the final decision.

In the last ten years, over 1,500 council houses have been sold under the scheme and recent data suggests there is a significant shortage of affordable homes in Swansea.

In an effort to prevent a further reduction in available affordable housing, the local authority wants to suspend the right-to-buy scheme for council tenants and the right-to-acquire scheme for housing association tenants.

Cllr June Burtonshaw, cabinet member for place in Swansea, said: "Suspending the right to buy and the right to acquire makes a lot of sense because it will help reduce the decline in the number of council properties available to rent, help meet demand for social housing and at the same time support the Council’s anti-poverty agenda."

The council have to approve the proposal before the application can be formally submitted to the Welsh government for a decision.

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