Q. Am I eligible for Right To Buy (RTB)
A. You will probably have the Right to Buy if you’re a secure council tenant and have spent at least 3 years as a public sector tenant in England. The 3 years doesn’t have to be continuous and you can add together any time you have spent as a public sector tenant. A public sector tenant is someone whose landlord is a public body such as a council, housing association or government department.
Q. Is there a RTB scheme in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland?
A. Housing is a devolved policy, and it’s up to the governments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to decide whether to offer schemes such as Right to Buy.
Q. Can I make a joint application under RTB?
A. Yes, you can but only certain people are allowed to join an application. If you are eligible, you may be able to buy with:
– someone who is on the tenancy agreement with you;
– your spouse or civil partner;
– up to three family members, who have been living in your home for the 12 months immediately before you make the application. They don’t have to be on the tenancy agreement but it must be their main home.
Q. Will the mortgage lender take my discount as deposit?
A. Many lenders will take the discount as a deposit, although some will not. We can advise you accordingly.
Q. If I sell my RTB acquired property will I have to pay back the discount?
A. You are able to sell your home at any time, but if you sell your home within the first five years, the landlord has the right to ask for repayment of all or part of the discount. After five years, you can sell the property without repaying any of the discount you received. The amount you pay back depends on the value of your home when you sell it.
Q. How much discount am I entitled to?
A. The Right to Buy discount increases with the length of tenancy up to a maximum limit. If you are looking to purchase a house, after three years' tenancy, the discount is set at 35% of the property value plus 1% for each year beyond the qualifying period, up to a maximum of a 70% discount. If you are interested in a flat, the discount starts at 50% and rises by 2% each year up to a maximum of 70%.
You could now get a maximum discount of up to ￡77,900, or ￡103,900 if you live in London. Under plans announced by the government, this amount will now increase in line with inflation.
Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.