Right to Buy - buying your council home

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The Right to Buy allows eligible Council tenants to apply to buy their home with a discount.

Who has the Right to Buy?

  • You probably have the Right to Buy if you are a secure tenant and have been a public sector tenant for at least three years.
  • The qualifying period as a public sector tenant may include your current or any previous relevant tenancies. Most commonly these will be tenancies with us, or another council or a housing association. Previous tenancies do not have to have been a secure tenancy.
  • You will be a tenant if your name appears on the tenancy agreement.
  • The agreement of any joint tenant who does not wish to apply must be obtained beforehand, and their tenancy will end when the property is bought.
  • Your spouse or civil partner can share in the Right to Buy as long as the property is their only or principal home.
  • Up to three members of your family may share the Right to Buy with you if the property is their only or principal home and they have lived with you throughout the 12 months prior to the application.

How much will you have to pay for your property?

The Right to Buy scheme gives tenants a discount on the market value of their property at the time of their application. We will cover the cost of the valuation.

The amount of discount you receive will depend on how long you have been a tenant in total, either as a public sector tenant or in accommodation provided by the armed forces.

If you live in a house:

  • You get a 35% discount if you've been a public sector tenant for between three and five years
  • After five years the discount goes up 1% for each additional year, up to a maximum of 70% or £96,000, whichever is the lower

If you live in a flat:

  • You get a 50% discount if you've been a public sector tenant for between three and five years
  • After five years the discount goes up by 2% for each additional year, up to a maximum of 70% or £96,000, whichever is the lower
  • The maximum discount that applies to applications made on or after 6th April 2023 is £96,000.

Appealing your property's valuation

  • If you do not agree with the Council's valuation of your property, you have the right to appeal to the District Valuer. The District Valuer operates independently of the Council.
  • You must advise us within three months of receiving your offer notice if you wish the District Valuer to re-value the property.
  • The decision of the District Valuer is final and binding on both sides, although either side can ask the District Valuer to review the valuation if they believe a significant error of fact has been made.

How to apply

If you wish to apply for the Right to Buy you will need to download and complete a Right to Buy application from the GOV.UK website:

Fill in all the sections, including the list of your previous tenancies and any improvements you have made to the property. You will also be asked to sign a declaration that you have not been declared bankrupt. Return the completed forms to us using one of the following methods:

The fastest way to get these forms and any documents back to us is to scan and email them to:

Otherwise, you can post or hand deliver your completed form and documents to:

  • Right to Buy Team,
    Adur Homes,
    Ground Floor,
    Worthing Town Hall, 
    Chapel Road,
    BN11 1HA

Please note that we will require other documents to process your application, including:

  • Photo ID (passport or driving licence)
  • proof of tenancy (your tenancy agreement)
  • proof of 12 months residence at the property (eg bills from throughout a 12-month period from a utility company, or electoral role confirmation with name and address clearly stated)

Please note that the Council complies with the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and implements a risk-based approach to detect and prevent money laundering. As a result all applications are verified and vetted by our Corporate Fraud Team.

If you wish to discuss the Right to Buy process with us, you can email the Right to Buy Team at:

Selling your home

If you want to sell a property bought under the Right to Buy scheme, you must first offer it back to the Council. To find out more please see:

Housing Privacy Notice

All data submitted in terms of the Right to Buy will be processed in accordance with the:

Frequently Asked Questions

Does it cost anything to apply for the Right to Buy scheme?

No, we do not charge you any administration costs, and we also cover the cost of the valuation and our own legal costs.

Can I change my mind once I have accepted the offer?

You can withdraw from purchasing your property through Right to Buy at any stage up to completion without incurring any penalties. This will also not affect any future application you may wish to make, but you may be liable to pay any legal or other costs you have incurred up to the point you withdraw.

How long will my application take?

We have to tell you if you are eligible for the Right to Buy within four weeks of receiving your application (or within eight weeks if you have not been our tenant for the full qualifying period). We will send you a notice with our decision. If the notice advises that you are eligible, we have to issue your offer notice, which gives the purchase price and the terms and conditions of sale, within eight weeks for a house and 12 weeks for a flat or maisonette.

Once the offer has been issued you have 12 weeks to tell us if you want to proceed. If you do not let us know what you intend to do in time, you will be sent a reminder. If you do not reply within 28 days, your application will be cancelled.

Once you have accepted the offer you can take the time you reasonably need to get a mortgage and take legal advice etc. If the Council thinks you are delaying, you may receive a warning notice which gives you 56 days to complete. If you haven't completed by the end of that period or told us you disagree with the terms of the sale, you will get a further 56 days. If you don't complete by the end of that period, your application will be ended.

For further information

You can also contact our Right to Buy team using the contact details below.

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Page last updated: 08 June 2023

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