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From Thatcher to Johnson: how right to buy has fuelled a 40-year housing crisis

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‘It feels like a way to change your fortunes – that’s the British dream,” says the writer and housing rights campaigner Vicky Spratt on right to buy.

When she began researching Tenants, her new book about Britain’s dysfunctional private housing market, she knew that Margaret Thatcher’s flagship policy, which has seen 2m homes bought by council tenants at massive discounts since 1980, was important.By the time she finished it, Spratt realised it had “entered the public consciousness like no other policy, and in that respect it’s one of the most successful of all time”.Thatcher would be disappointed, though.

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