Nathan Wilkinson, Director at Brewster Bye Architects in Leeds, says: “The UK’s housing shortage is a critical issue that has a major impact on so many peoples’ lives as well as being a key driver of confidence in the wider economy. Although the Conservatives are committed to increasing housing supply, the ‘Right to Buy’ element of their policy is worrying.
“With housing associations and councils being pressured to sell their most valuable assets there is a significant risk that this will stifle the supply of affordable rental houses in the short term. It remains to be seen how much of the estimated £4.5bn a year this will raise, actually finds its way back into capital expenditure for new housing. While this policy might prop up the economy and a skewed notion of aspiration, it does nothing to increase housing supply and only deepens the housing affordability crisis. Housing associations are already making great strides in exploring different tenure models, such as shared ownership, and the new government must offer them as much support as possible in doing this.”