If you are currently renting your home through us then you may qualify to buy your home at a discounted price through the right to buy or right to acquire government schemes.
If you have been renting your home from us since before 1999, when Worthing Borough Council transferred its housing stock to Worthing Homes, you have a ‘right to buy’ your home. This is known as a ‘Preserved Right to Buy’ (PRTB).
If you have been a tenant since transfer, you may also buy your home under the ‘Right to Acquire’ guidelines. This scheme also gives public sector tenants who have been renting for at least two years (or five years if you became a public sector tenant after 18 January 2005) the right to purchase their property from their landlord at a discount.
Things to consider before buying your property
Buying your home is a major financial commitment which will involve immediate one-off costs such as stamp duty, legal and survey fees, land registry fees, mortgage fees, and a valuation fee.
After completion, you will also need to make regular payments in respect of the property, such as:
- mortgage repayments (there is a risk of repossession if mortgage payments are not maintained);
- Council tax;
- buildings and home contents insurance;
- utility bills;
- all repairs and maintenance.
If you are a leaseholder, you will also be responsible for service charges (there is a risk of legal action if payments are not maintained, which may lead to repossession).
How to apply
Once you’ve made the decision to buy you can contact our Sales and Leasehold Officer for a ‘Buy Your Home’ application form.
Once we receive this back we will let you know whether you qualify for the right to buy. If you do you will be sent a letter, called a Section 125 notice outlining:
- the price of the property;
- the discount you are eligible for;
- estimates of service charges and improvement costs you are likely to pay in the next five years;
- any structural problems the property may have;
- terms and conditions of the sale.
If you disagree with the price given for your home you can ask for an independent valuation by the District Valuer. However, the valuer’s decision is final, so if it is found that the value of your house is higher than the original price your landlord is asking for, you will have to stick with it.
You must make your decision about whether you want to go ahead with buying the property within 12 weeks of receiving the notice. At this stage it is advisable to get independent financial and legal advice as well as getting a survey.