As much as poll tax, right to buy is viewed as one of the defining policies of Thatcher’s time in office.
From the moment of its introduction on 3 October 1980, right to buy has been a divisive and controversial policy. Supporters argue it gives the aspirational working class the opportunity to own their own home and improve their financial circumstances: opponents say it amounts to a sub-market flogging of public assets and has caused distorted house prices, substantially contributing to the housing crisis.
Those against the policy spanned the political divide – with some Conservatives against the undervaluing and flogging of assets, finding themselves on the same side as Labour MPs defending state-owned housing.
But the take up has been huge: since the introduction of right to buy more than 1.8m council homes have been sold at a discount.
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