HC Deb 29 March 1976 vol 908 c344W
Mr. Douglas-Mann

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) what was the estimated overall loss to public funds, for the most recent convenient period, resulting from the sale of dwellings by local authorities at less than market value; and what was the average loss per dwelling;

(2) what has been the average proportion of market value charged to occupiers on the sale to them of council dwellings.

Mr. Freeson

Local authorities have sold dwellings to sitting tenants at current market value assuming vacant possession, with the discount taken as reflecting restriction on that value arising both from the local authority's right of pre-emption and from the restriction on the resale price. Such sales are subject, moreover, to the limitation in the relevant circular of no sale by the local authority below historic cost. With the sales subject to these conditions I do not think it could be said that a loss to public funds had necessarily arisen. It is estimated that the average discount in 1974–75 was about 17 per cent.