Buy-back plan to boost homes pot for tenants in Bourne and Deepings

Coun Linda Wootten, SKDC executive member for housing.
Coun Linda Wootten, SKDC executive member for housing.
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Homes sold to tenants in the Deepings and Bourne could be bought back in a bid to boost the area’s rental housing.

South Kesteven District Council (SKDC) is launching a buy-back scheme in a reverse of Right to Buy, a programme made popular by the 1980s Conservative Government under former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

The council can use money received from previous house sales to pay for buy-back homes which, although the authority is also building new houses, would mean that properties could be available immediately

Coun Linda Wootten, executive member for housing, South Kesteven District Council

About 115 homes have been sold in the last three years on Right to Buy terms across South Kesteven, including Bourne and the Deepings, where tenants have paid a lower-than-market price for their homes.

But Coun Linda Wootten, SKDC’s executive member for housing, said: “The council wants to make properties available for rent where they are needed and our initial focus would be on two and three-bedroomed houses.

“It can use money received from previous house sales to pay for buy-back homes which, although the authority is also building new houses, would mean that properties could be available immediately.”

When a property bought under the Right to Buy scheme is available for sale, SKDC has the first right of refusal if it becomes available within ten years of the original sale.

This applies to all properties sold after 2005, but any money received from the sale of council houses has to be spent within strict Government timelines or any underspends have to be sent back to the Treasury.

An SKDC spokesman said: “It is thought that the council could buy back up to ten homes a year so this scheme means best use can be made of the money, ensuring that the investment stays in the area.”