Council's investigation into pressured area status shows clear need for more homes
7 April 2009
Graeme Brown, Director of Shelter Scotland, the housing and homelessness charity, said: 'The decision in Argyll and Bute to look at the possibility of applying for pressured area status i.e. curbing the right to buy for people - clearly shows the need for more affordable rented homes in Scotland. 
'Twelve councils have already applied and been grated pressured area status, with Stirling Council being the most recent 
'There's no doubt Right to Buy has been popular in Argyll and Bute with over 50 per cent of the council's original stock being sold but unfortunately this has been at the expense of providing homes for families. With just over 3,100 households on the waiting list in Argyll and Bute , the council and local housing associations, clearly see this as a way to help address the shortage of affordable housing in its area.'
He added: 'This situation is mirrored across Scotland, with 200,000 households on waiting lists. However, Pressured Area Status is just one of the few tools available to local authorities to limit the sale of homes. The Scottish Government is due to publish proposals for far reaching reforms of Right to Buy after Easter and Shelter Scotland strongly supports measures to reform this out of date policy.
'However, ending Right to Buy will not provide a solution to the housing shortage in Argyll and Bute and any other areas that might choose to look at this option in the future. With increasing pressure on affordable housing and the 2012 homelessness target to meet, Scotland desperately needs to keep and add to its stock of affordable rented housing.
'This is why Shelter is calling on the Scottish Government and Councils across Scotland to support our call for a fiscal stimulus package through the upcoming UK budget. This would provide a vital injection of money to build more homes in Scotland, help house people and keep the construction industry afloat.'
Notes to editors
- Argyll and Bute Council press release, 'Argyll and Bute Council and Home Argyll explore possibility of Pressured Area Designation'