Sales of Local Authority Dwellings to Sitting Tenants (Right to Buy)
Most sales of local authority housing to tenants are sales under Right to Buy although a small number cover other sales such as voluntary sales by local authorities to sitting tenants.
In July 2013 the Scottish Government announced that the Right to Buy scheme was to end for all tenants. Immediately following this announcement the number of applications and the number of sales between July and September 2013 both increased (by 39% and 44%, respectively) compared to the previous quarter.
Chart 13: Local Authority Sales to Sitting Tenants, Quarterly Applications and Sales, 2006 onwards
The Right to Buy scheme subsequently closed to all new applicants on 31 July 2016, therefore there have been no Right to Buy applications made during the last four quarters (October 2016 to September 2017). Throughout the final year of the scheme (the year to end September 2016), there were 9,060 applications made, more than double the 3,890 applications that were made in the previous year to end September 2015. This increase is likely to have been because this was the last chance for social housing tenants with an entitlement to exercise their Right to Buy before the scheme closed.
It can take a period of time for applications to be processed and for sales to be made, and therefore Right to Buy sales are still being recorded. In the latest available quarter, July to September 2017, there were 587 Right to Buy sales, 18% less than the 506 sales in the same quarter in the previous year, and 25% less than the 787 sales in the previous quarter, April to June 2017. It is expected that sales will continue to fall further in future quarters as the number of applications remaining in the system falls.