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ARCH responds to consultation on use of RTB receipts 11/10/2018 Labelled as Scrutiny, Legislation

In a written Ministerial statement on 29 March 2018, accepting that the current restrictions around the use of Right to Buy (RTB) receipts are a barrier to delivery of more homes, the Government said it would consult with the sector on more flexible arrangements. 


The government issued the promised consultation paper entitled "Use of receipts from Right to Buy sales" on 14 August 2018 alongside the Social Housing Green Paper setting out proposals and options for reforms to the rules governing the use of RTB receipts including potentially abandoning the the government's current national one-for-one replacement commitment.


ARCH welcomed publication of the consultation paper, having long argued for reform of the current arrangements setting out the case for reform in both our submission prior to the 2017 Autumn Statement and in our paper to government "Social housing we can all be proud of" submitted prior to the publication of the Government's Social Housing Green Paper.


The consultation paper proposes:


  • To allow local authorities to hold receipts they currently retain for up to 5 years; future receipts would continue to have to be used within 3 years;
  • To increase the cap on the use of receipts from 30% to 50% of build costs for homes for social rent in "high demand" areas;
  • To allow local authorities to "top-up" insufficient RTB receipts with funding from the Affordable Homes Programme of up to 30% of build costs for affordable rent or, in "high demand" areas, 50% of build costs for social rent;
  • To set an upper limit based on to average build costs on the price of dwellings acquired using receipts;
  • To allow authorities to use receipts to provide homes for shared ownership;
  • To allow authorities to gift General Fund land to the HRA for use for new housing provided it has been held in the General Fund for a number of years;
  • To allow a short window of three months during which local authorities could return receipts without incurring interest;
  • To replace the current target of one-for-one replacement of "additional" homes old under the RTB with a wider measure covering net additions to the social housing stock held by both local authorities and housing associations.


We have sought the views of our member councils and would like to thank those who responded to help inform our response to the specific questions posed in the consultation paper.


Details of the ARCH response to the consultation paper can be found here

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