Four out of 10 council homes sold under Margaret Thatcher’s flagship right-to-buy policy are now in the hands of private landlords, with their tenants paying more than twice the rent levels charged by local authorities.
Raise council rents to market rates.
Yes, this will mean the housing benefit bill rises, at least to start with. But then we should see the true cost of housing policy, shouldn’t have substantial parts of it off hidden in opportunity costs.
Just to clarify. If we can get £x in rent from a property, but only charge £x/2 for it, then £1/2x is a cost of our housing policy. It’s not obvious, not in the open, but it’s still a cost. Better by far to have all costs open so that we can at least consider them.