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Right to Buy

Are you thinking about buying your Ashfield Council home? Please follow the steps listed be for all the information you will need.

If you are unsure or have any questions please contact us by email: righttobuy@ashfield.gov.uk or telephone on: 01623 457500 or switchboard on: 01623 450000, we will be happy to answer any questions you have.

Right to Buy is a Government scheme that allows secure tenants to buy their home at a discounted price, depending on eligibility. The Right to Buy is available to secure tenant of Local Authorities, non-charitable Housing Associations and to assured tenants of registered providers (Housing Associations).

Please read all the information below about the Right to Buy process, this will provide you with your rights and what is involved.

Government Guidance Website

To be able to qualify for the Right to Buy:

  • You must be a secure tenant on the date that you make your application
  • You must have been a tenant for at least 3 years. This can be from previous addresses as well as your current address.
  • Your property must be your only or principle home.
  • Anyone sharing the Right to Buy, i.e. family member, joint tenant must have occupied the property as their only main home for 12 months or more.

You can NOT:

  • You must not have a court possession order against you,
  • Be bankruptcy or have a bankruptcy petition pending against you.

Please take the eligibility quiz 

Reasons that you may not qualify for the Right to Buy may include:

  • You do not currently have a secure tenancy
  • Your home is designated as sheltered accommodation
  • Your home is designated for people over the age of 60
  • Your home is designed for people who are physically disabled

Buying a home is often the biggest single investment most people will ever make therefore, there is a lot to think about around the costs associated with this. 

Look at all the costs to you.  Not just mortgage repayments as you will have additional one off costs like surveyors fees, solicitor’s fees as well other future costs and responsibilities you may not currently have as a tenant such as, repairs and maintenance, buildings insurance etc.  All this is in addition to your current living costs (bills, food etc.) when working out what you can afford.

Comparing Costs

There are other things to take into consideration when you become a homeowner such as:

  • You won’t be eligible for housing benefit if you become a homeowner.
  • You may want income protection or life insurance in case anything happens to you while paying back your mortgage. Your home could be at risk if you fail to keep up with your mortgage repayments.
  • Even if you don’t need a mortgage yourself, check whether lenders are willing to give mortgages on the type of house or flat you are buying. This is because, if you want to sell in the future, people interested in buying your property might need a mortgage.

The longer you have been a tenant, the bigger the discount you will get off the market value of your home, up to a maximum discount of £80,900 (outside of London) or £108,000 (London). 

The discount you receive may be reduced if the amount of money we have spent on your home in the last 10 years, (15 years for a new build property) is more than the purchase price of your home.  This is called the cost floor.  We cannot sell your home for less than the cost floor amount. 

If you have previously bought a property under Right to Buy scheme then the discount you received for that property will be taken off the discount on your current Right to Buy purchase. 

The table below gives an example of the discount you could receive should your house be valued at £90,000 and a flat at £50,000. Depending on the outcome of the valuation you may not get the full amount of discount shown maximum discount limit. 

Discount range from 35% to 70% for houses and 50% to 70% for flats and Maisonettes. 

Property Value – The value of your home will be determined by the valuation which will be carried out by a qualified an independent Property Adviser. 

To find out more click on the following links:

Freehold or Leasehold

If you are buying a house you will be sold the freehold.  This means you will be the outright owner of the property and land it sits on.

If you are buying a flat you will be sold a 125 year lease.  This means that the Council will still own the freehold of the land and you will have to pay an annual service charge for repairs and maintenance.  This will be billed to you annually.

To submit a Right to Buy application we require an appointment with each applicant.  Please call on 01623 457500 or 01623 450000. 

Please download, print, and complete the following before your appointment:

You must bring your completed forms to the appointment with you along with the one Photo ID listed in section 1 and one other proof listed in section 2 with your application.  This will be required for each of the applicants applying:

  1. Photo Proof of ID (must be a valid in date passport or drivers licence for each applicant); if these are not available then a birth certificate and marriage licence will be required or Divorce Certificate if appropriate or change of name ‘Deed Poll’ document.
  2. Utility Bill, Council Tax Bill, Medical Card, Proof of Residency, recent Utility Bills, Bank or Building Society statement, Evidence of National Insurance number – NI Card, Payslip, Letters from DWP or HM Revenues and Customs, Proof of Benefits, Pensions – DWP Letters, Proof of earnings or self-employment – Payslips, P60, Bankruptcy Discharge Certificate, Car Registration Document and MOT Certificate and Car Insurance Certificate.

Further information may be required such at your mortgage promise/offer in principal or evidence of funds available.  This can be requested at any time during the process. 

We will also carry out Money Laundering checks will be completed as part of the process.

Should you require any further guidance/help please refer to Government Guidance


What to expect

To keep the quality of the Right to Buy service high, we have a set of standards that we aim to meet when providing this service.

We will:

  • provide you with a named officer with contact details who will be able to assist with an enquiry relating to your application or submitting an application, post any requests for a Right to Buy application packs within 3 working days of the request.  (RTB1 Application Form and Ashfield District Council Additional Information Form).
  • Make an appointment to meet with you at our offices for you to formally apply to buy your council home. If you are unable to come to our office due to a disability or exceptional circumstances, we can arrange to visit you at your home.
  • Acknowledge the receipt of your Right to Buy application.
  • Deal with your telephone enquiry immediately as most enquiries can be dealt with over the telephone.  If the Right to Buy officer is not available, we will take your telephone number and phone you back within two working days.
  • Respond to written enquiries within 5 working days of receiving the letter.  Sometimes this may not be possible if we have to obtain information or advice from another party. In such circumstances, we will acknowledge your query within five working days and respond in full as soon as possible.
  • Advise you within 4 weeks of receiving the completed Right to Buy application form whether you can have the right to buy your home (RTB2). This may take up to 8 weeks however, if you have been a tenant with another social landlord and you are relying on former tenancies to make up your qualifying period.
  • Tell you the price of your home within 8 weeks of the date of your RTB2 notice for houses and, within 12 weeks of the date of your RTB2 notice for flats/maisonettes.
  • Instruct the Council’s Legal Department within 10 working days if you wish to proceed with the Right to Buy.
  • Cancel your Right to Buy within 5 working days.  This is upon receipt of your written confirmation to us stating that you no longer wish to proceed with the right to buy.

Consultation & Information

We welcome any ideas and suggestions you may have to improve our service to you. If you do have any suggestions on how we could improve the processing of Right to Buy applications please contact the Right to Buy Officer by email on righttobuy@ashfield.gov.uk, in letter or telephone.