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Buying your home is probably the biggest financial decision you will ever make.  So please take the time to read this information and to consider whether or not it is the right choice for you.

What is the Right to Buy?

The Right to Buy is a scheme giving eligible tenants of registered social landlords the legal right to buy the home they currently rent. 

Who can qualify for the Right to Buy?

You probably have the preserved right to buy your home if you transferred your tenancy from Crewe and Nantwich Borough to Wulvern Housing.  The Preserved Right to Buy operates in a similar way to the normal Right to Buy, and is only available to those assured tenants who transferred from Crewe and Nantwich. Those who became assured tenants of Wulvern after 10th March 2003 may have the Right to Acquire.

Exceptions to the Right to Buy

There are a number of reasons why you can not buy your home, these are:-

  • If you live in a home which is specially designed for elderly people or people with special needs.
  • If the court has made an order for possession telling you to leave your home
  • If the court has made an order suspending your Right to Buy because of anti-social behaviour.
  • If your home is due to be demolished
  • If the property is on land that has been brought for development and is being used as temporary housing.
  • If you are an undischarged bankrupt or have a bankruptcy petition pending against you.
  • There may be other exceptions depending upon your individual circumstances

How do I apply for the Right to Buy?

  • Wulvern will send you the Right to Buy application form (RTB1) for you to complete and return.  It is important that the information you provide is correct as it is used to determine whether or not you have the Right to Buy. 
  • When Wulvern receive your application form we will check the details and confirm whether or not you have the Right to Buy by sending you a notice (RTB2). If you have the Right to Buy will send you an Insolvency Declaration form for completion by each person wishing to buy the property).   If you do not have the Right to Buy we will provide an explanation on the RTB2 form.  You should receive this form within 4 weeks of us receiving your application form.
  • If you have the Right to Buy your home will be valued by an independent professional valuer.
  • You will be sent a Section 125 Offer Notice which gives the current market value of the property, the sale price (which takes into account the discount allowed and any improvements you have made to the property), any structural defects and the terms and conditions of the sale. From 2nd April 2012, the maximum amount of discount allowed under the Right to Buy is £75,000, subject to a cap of a maximum discount of 60% for a house and 70% for a flat.  This notice contains a lot of important information, which you should consider carefully before you decide whether or not to continue.
  • If you decide to continue with the purchase please let Wulvern know within twelve weeks of receiving your Offer Notice.  If we do not hear from you, we will write to you with a reminder to complete the purchase.  If we do not hear from you within 28 days your application will be withdrawn.
  • If you do wish to proceed you will need to tell us who your solicitors are and provide us with evidence that you have the funds to buy the property.  Your rent account must also be up to date.
  • Wulvern should deal with your application as quickly as possible, however if  you do not receive the form telling you that you have the Right to Buy or the Section 125 Offer Notice, you can send us an Initial Notice of Delay form.  If after a month Wulvern have not replied you can send an Operative Notice of Delay.  This means you may get a reduction in the price you pay for your home.  However, if we taken the appropriate action you will not be entitled to any reduction.

Important as soon as you put in a Right to Buy application form, Wulvern will remove your name from any planned improvement programmes going on in your area and only carry out emergency repairs.
With regard to inclusion on our improvement programme, when your Right to Buy is withdrawn, Wulvern will not be able to include your home on the improvement programme this year and cannot guarantee when the work would take place.
 

What you can expect to pay:

Solicitors fees: these are fees payable to the solicitor acting on your behalf and will include the fee for searches, land registry and legal costs.  You must tell us who your solicitors are so that we can forward the legal papers to them.

Survey fees: you should have an independent structural survey carried out at your property, as all properties are “sold as seen”.  This would be done at your own expense but it could help you to avoid problems in the future.  Wulvern does not accept any liability for properties which have been sold, nor is any survey carried out except for valuation purposes.

Stamp duty: 1% of the value of your property is payable if your property is valued between £125,000.01 and £250,000.

Mortgage costs: this typically includes a set up fee, deposit, and mortgage payment protection insurance if appropriate.   Wulvern would recommend that you speak to an Independent Financial Advisor before committing yourself. 

Life Assurance: mortgage companies may require you to have this cover and some may also recommend critical illness cover.

Important - If you decide at any stage, to withdraw from the Right to Buy, you will be required to pay any of the above fees that have been incurred up to the point that you withdraw from the purchase.                                                                                                               

Mortgage payments: depending on the type of mortgage your monthly repayments will be affected by changes in interest rates.

Repairs and maintenance: you will be responsible for all repairs and maintenance, eg internal and external repairs including roofing, guttering, windows, doors, plumbing, heating and hot water systems.  You will have to make your own arrangements for contractors to attend in an emergency.

Insurance: if your property is a house you will need to take out buildings insurance as well as home contents insurance.

Service charge: You will become a leaseholder if you live in a flat.  This means you will be responsible for all repairs and maintenance inside the flat.  You will pay service charges and may have to pay into a “sink fund”, which will be to cover the cost of maintenance on communal parts of the flat.  You may also be requested to contribute to major repairs should this be necessary. 

Everyday bills: you will still have to pay everyday bills such as utility bills, council tax etc.

Other things to consider

Future sellers costs: If you sell your home within five years of buying it from Wulvern, you will have to repay all or some of the discount allowed to you.  No repayment is made after five years. 

Right of first refusal: If you wish to resell or dispose of your home within ten years of purchasing, you will be required to offer it to Wulvern at full market value.

Risk of repossession: If you can’t keep up with the repayments on your mortgage, the lender may go to court and take possession of your home.  If you are struggling to pay your mortgage we advise you to speak to your lender immediately.  The Citizens Advice Bureau also offer professional money management advice.

Beware!

  • If someone tells you that the Right to Buy scheme is to be changed or ended.
  • If you are approached by a person or company offering to help you buy your home, for an introductory charge.
  • A company that offers you money “up front” in a deal under which the company ends up owning the property after five years.  Some tenants have found themselves homeless after agreeing to such deals.

Next steps

If you think you would like to buy your home or would like some more information, please contact Dawn Humphries on 01270 503516.

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