Right to buy
Under the Right to Buy scheme, some tenants are able to buy their home at a price lower than the full market value. The length of time you have spent as a tenant entitles you to a discount on the purchase price of your home.
The Right to Buy scheme applies to people who hold secure tenancies. If you are not sure what this means or which tenancy applies in your case, please telephone the Right to Buy team on 01322 343832.
This is a summary of the law relating to the Right to Buy and is not intended to cover everything. If you wish to exercise your Right to Buy or you want to find out more about buying your home, please contact the Right to Buy team on the telephone number stated above.
Dartford Borough Council recommends that you seek independent legal and financial advice about your individual circumstances before making any decisions about buying your home.
For further details and information Right to Buy discounts, please visit the Communities and Local Government website's Right to Buy page.
More information can be found on the following pages of Government websites:
- Higher Right to Buy discounts and expert advice to help tenants become
- Agent Service
- Right to Buy Summary Booklet
Things to consider before deciding to buy your home
Take time to consider whether buying your home is the right choice for you.
If you do exercise the Right to Buy, you will become responsible for all the costs of maintaining your home, including routine repairs, major structural repairs, and any improvements you make to it, and service charges if they are applicable.
- As an owner-occupier, you will not receive any housing benefit to help with your mortgage costs;
- If you are elderly and own your home, its value may be taken into account in assessing whether you have to pay the full cost of residential care.
The Government made some changes to the Right to Buy scheme which took effect on 21st July 2014:
- The maximum % discount for both flats and houses is now 70% of the market value;
- From 1 April 2019, the maximum monetary discount is £82,800;
- The maximum monetary discount is increased in line with inflation each April.
The Deregulation Bill received Royal Assent on Thursday 26th March 2015. The Act reduced the qualifying period for the Right to Buy from 5 to 3 years from Tuesday 26th May 2015.
- If you are a new tenant of the Council, the length of time you must be a tenant before being eligible to buy is now 3 years;
- The discount repayment period is 5 years (this is the length of time you must keep your home without losing all or part of your discount when you sell);
- The amount of discount to be repaid if a property is resold within 5 years is a percentage of the value of the property when it is resold
Be suspicious if anyone tries to tell you that the Right to Buy is ending soon, or asks if they can buy your home on your behalf. Always check with the Right to Buy team before making any decisions or signing any papers to do with buying your home.
Some tenants have found themselves homeless after agreeing to such deals. You do not have to pay anything for the application forms to buy your home as these are available freely on request. If in doubt, check it out.
If your tenancy commenced before 18 January 2005 or you were a public sector tenant before that date, you can apply for the Right to Buy if you have spent at least 2 years as a tenant
The Right to Buy scheme gives tenants a discount on the market value of their homes. The longer you have been a tenant, the more discount you get. The maximum discount currently available for Dartford Borough Council tenants is £80,900.
If you buy a flat or maisonette, you will be given a long lease (125 years) that allows you and your successors to live in it for that time,as Leaseholder
Buying your home is a major financial commitment. Apart from paying for the building itself, you will then have to maintain it. If you buy a flat on a long lease, you will also have to pay service charges
Start by asking the Council for the Right to Buy claim form (Form RTB1)
The Council must send you Form RTB2 telling you whether or not you have the Right to Buy within 4 weeks from the date on which the Council received your RTB1 form (or within 8 weeks if you have been a tenant of the Council for less than 2 years).
Informing the council what you want to do next
If you are happy with the Council’s terms for selling your home to you, and you have arranged your mortgage, you are ready to go ahead and buy. You should tell the Council that you are ready, and ask your solicitor for advice on the legal documents and making your payment. It can take several months before you become the owner of your home.
Information covering exceptions to the right to buy scheme