HC Deb 06 July 1983 vol 45 cc276-7
18. Mr. Heddle

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment how many people are in shared-ownership housing.

Sir George Young

About 7,500 people have bought homes on shared ownership terms over the past four years. My Department's estimates of shared ownership sales show a continuing marked increase from year to year over that period, with over half of the sales taking place during 1982–83. There will be a further contribution to shared ownership from the do-it-yourself scheme introduced in January this year. The Housing Corporation has already approved over 400 sales under the new scheme, and the initial programme was for 3,000 units.

Mr. Heddle

Will my hon. Friend take time to study the relevant statistics in the Building Societies Association annual report, entitled "Housing Tenure", which was published last week? Is he aware that it shows that 80 per cent. of people in Britain, 45 per cent. of whom are council tenants, not merely want, but expect, to own their own homes in the next 10 years? Does my hon. Friend agree that provision for shared ownership in the Housing and Building Control Bill will go a long way to meet that demand? Will he ensure that that Bill receives Royal Assent with the utmost dispatch?

Sir George Young

I endorse entirely what my hon. Friend said. I regret that the Opposition opposed the Housing and Building control Bill last night. Shared ownership provides an extra rung at the bottom of the home ownership ladder, thus enabling people to get on to it earlier.

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