Labour demands that Conservative Candidates Lyndsey Hall and Mark Field disown “mean and nasty proposals”
All 400 Westminster Council flats which come vacant each year will be sold off under Conservative plans to extend the Right to Buy to Housing Association tenants. Under Conservative plans, Westminster Council will be forced to sell off “expensive” properties when they become vacant in order to pay for the £100,000 discount that will be given to Housing Association tenants to buy their flats.
The Conservatives have revealed their definition of “expensive” properties in London as follows:
1 bedroom 2 bedroom 3 bedroom 4 bedrooms 5 or more bedrooms
£340,000 £400,000 £490,000 £790,000 £1,205,000
In Westminster, the cheapest 1, 2 and 3 bedroom flats are above the Conservative threshold. For example,
• A 1 bed flat in Kimble House, Lisson Green is currently being advertised at £355,000 http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-48707506.html
• A 2 bed flat in Risborough House, Lisson Green is currently being advertised at £425,000 http://www.zoopla.co.uk/for-sale/details/35083422#TEVPWwQtG2cqfKzl.97
• A 3 bed flat in Mounsey House on the Mozart Estate is currently being advertised at £495,000 http://www.zoopla.co.uk/for-sale/details/35972922#URcHT19q2HQD9Gix.97
Council properties in more expensive areas such as St John’s Wood, Maida Vale, Bayswater, the West End, Soho, Marylebone and Pimlico will all exceed the Conservative threshold for expensive flats and will be sold off as they become vacant.
According to the March report on the Supply and Allocation of Council Housing 2015/15, Westminster Council estimates that 410 Council flats will come empty and ready for re-letting in 2015/16.
The Council expects to have the following vacant flats in 2015/16
Studio – 91
1 bed – 182
2 bed – 74
3 bed – 58
4+ bed – 5
Total – 410
Under Conservative proposals all these flats will now be sold off, many to property speculators and buy-to-let landlords.
Councillor Paul Dimoldenberg, Leader of the Labour Group, said:
“Conservative plans to force the Council to sell off all 400 Council flats that come available for re-letting each year will bring nothing but misery to the many thousands of local residents living in overcrowded conditions and who desperately need a home for their children. The stark implications of this policy is that no local families will ever be rehoused in Westminster again as the Council will be forced to sell off all its flats which come vacant. Only the rich will ever be able to live in Westminster. This will be a hammer blow to local communities all over Westminster. I demand that Conservative Candidates Lyndsey Hall and Mark Field publicly disown these truly damaging, mean and nasty proposals.”
Promoted by Andy Whitley on behalf of Karen Buck both at 4g Shirland Mews, London W9 3DY