Wales politics

Anglesey to suspend right-to-buy council homes

Social housing at Llangefni, Anglesey Image copyright Google
Image caption Nearly half of all council houses on Anglesey have been sold, the local authority says

Anglesey has become the latest Welsh local authority to stop tenants buying their own council houses, Communities Secretary Carl Sargeant has confirmed.

He said he had agreed to suspending the right-to-buy scheme "to ensure homes are available to those who need them".

Swansea and Carmarthenshire have already been granted the power to halt sales to protect their housing stock.

Ministers are planning to introduce a law to abolish right-to-buy across Wales over the next year.

Ending the flagship policy of former Conservative Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher was one of the most eye catching pledges in Welsh Labour's assembly election manifesto.

Since 1980, more than 130,000 houses in Wales have been bought under right-to-buy, for council tenants, and right-to-acquire, for housing association tenants.

Supply 'pressure'

Anglesey council says nearly half its housing stock has been sold under the scheme - leaving it with fewer than 4,000 properties.

Mr Sargeant said he had agreed to the council's application to suspend right-to-buy to "help them deal with the pressure their social housing is facing and to ensure that homes are available to those who need them".

He said the Welsh Government was also abolishing right-to-buy altogether, because the scheme was "further increasing the pressure on our social housing supply and is forcing many vulnerable people to wait longer for a home".

"Legislating to end the right-to-buy is the only sure way to prevent this and give social landlords the confidence to invest in building more of the affordable homes Wales needs," Mr Sargeant added.

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