Britain

Council that sold houses for £190k buys them back for £1,200,000

council-that-sold-houses-for-190k-buys-them-back-for-1200000

Richard Hartley-Parkinson

Council that sold houses for £190k buys them back for £1,200,000
The houses in Brighton were bought back from private owners for £1.2million (Picture: Getty)

A council has come under fire after it bought two houses for £1.2million two decades after selling them for £190,000.

Brighton and Hove City Council described the purchase as good value and plans to turn them into 15 flats for temporary accommodation.

David Gibson, councillor for the Green party in the Labour-led administration, said: In Brighton and Hove we are drastically short of providing the amount of truly affordable rents and social housing the city needs.

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Instead of keeping existing homes and building more, Labour and Conservative governments sold off homes through the disastrous right to buy scheme for years.

More than 2,000 were lost to our city this way. In 2006 Labour even tried to transfer all our council housing to a housing association.

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The Labour council is now in a position of having to spend £1.2 million buying back a property it originally sold off for £190,000.

The loss made on buying back this home shows the flaws in flogging off our housing stock.

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He said tenants are losing out on affordable homes due to the councils previous decisions to sell off old properties.

The Green Party also says increased rent prices will make housing unaffordable for people on a low income.

Demand for social housing in the city is high, with more than 17,000 people on the waiting list for council homes.

The council will not reveal the exact address of the two houses to prevent squatters entering the premises.

A council spokesman said: The covenant gives us a chance to get these properties back into use as affordable housing at a good value.

Without it they would have cost considerably more.

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