A pressure group representing private tenants wants government to help housing associations purchase buy to let properties “at knockdown prices.”
A blog on the website of Generation Rent speculates on a housing market after lockdown as seen through the recommendations of the Affordable Housing Commission, which reported recently.
It considers a situation where private developers will be unable to sell new build homes at current values and first time buyers may be hampered by being unable to afford deposits for any home.
It then talks of “distressed landlords” who have to sell their homes, and it says: “To encourage a tenure shift of homes from the private sector into the social sector, the Commission recommended that the government support social landlords to purchase existing homes. Buying homes at knockdown prices would make it easier for not-for-profit landlords to charge affordable rents.”
However the Generation Rent blog then states that buy to let investors could get there first - it claims they “see a housing market crash as an opportunity to buy up properties and then ramp up rents as the economy recovers.”
It concludes: “We need government to provide a social housing acquisition fund to make sure tenants are the ones who benefit from any crash.”
The author of the Generation Rent blog was the group’s director, Dan Wilson Craw: in the blog he describes himself as one of “15 leading figures from the housing world” who wrote the Affordable Housing Commission report.