Right to Buy (sometimes called Right to Acquire, or the House Sales Scheme in Northern Ireland) is a scheme that’s open for tenants in England, Wales and Northern Ireland if they’re renting from a local council or housing association.
It helps those tenants buy their home at a discount (the aim being that the money raised from the scheme is helping to pay for more, new, affordable homes). There is a similar scheme in Scotland, but it’s coming to an end in 2016.
How does Right to Buy work?
From 6 April 2015 you can get a discount of up to £77,900 (or £103,900 if you live in London). This amount will go up each year in April in line with inflation.
To qualify, you have to be in a position to answer ‘yes’ to these three questions:
- Are you a council tenant, or were you a council tenant when your home was sold to your current landlord?
- Is the property is your only or main home?
- Have you been a tenant for at least 5 years?
And ‘no’ to four questions:
- Do you live in sheltered accommodation or housing suitable for elderly or disabled people?
- Do you have any legal problems with debt?
- Do you have any outstanding possession orders against you?
- Is your home due to be demolished?