[Re: We should be creating a Right to Build not reviving more Thatcherite dreams, May 5]
Elena Siniscalco is right to criticise the right-to-buy policy, and not just because it reduced both rented housing stock and increased house prices across-the-board: the policy was also one of the main underlying causes of the 2008 crash.
The policy effectively implied that renters were second-class citizens, who should be encouraged to buy at any cost (remember 125 per cent mortgages?), resulting in an inability to pay back the loan in more difficult times (the “sub-prime mortgages” of the comparable US scheme).
It completely ignores the fact that renting is a perfectly reasonable position for people who move around frequently, or whose income might be low and/or subject to significant fluctuation.
This is just a popularist rehash of a failed (and dangerous) policy, which may not be as popular as the PM thinks, given how little social housing is now available to buy. If you wanted any proof that there is no corporate learning in government, then this is it!