If you’ve made the decision to exercise your right to buy your council house, and you’ve made the local authority an offer, you need to appoint a solicitor.
Buying your council house from the local authority is different from buying a house privately – so you need a specialist right to buy lawyer.
Our conveyancing lawyers have the right to buy expertise you need for both council house sales locally in Wiltshire, Hampshire and Dorset and throughout England and Wales – from our offices in Salisbury, Fordingbridge, Andover and Amesbury.
So why not give us a ring now either on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 or on one of our local office numbers [see below] for FREE initial phone advice and an instant no obligation fee quote.
Buying your Council house or Flat
There are both restrictions and advantages in buying your council property.
The best news is the substantial discount you get when buying your home. As at 2019 the maximum discount is £82,800 [a huge £110,500 in London]. And that maximum discount goes up every April in line with inflation.
This discount varies on 3 factors:
- the value of your property
- how long you have been a local authority tenant
- whether you’re buying a flat or house
Remember, if you sell your property within 10 years of purchasing it using the Right to Buy scheme, you have to offer to sell it first to either the council you bought it from, or to another social landlord in the area at the full market price – although you can sell the property to anyone if that council or social landlord doesn’t agree to a purchase in 8 weeks.
And don’t forget that you are going to have to pay back some or all of the discount you received if you sell your Right to Buy home in the5 years after it was sold to you.
Tips on the Sale of Ex-Council Houses
The sale of ex-council properties can prove awkward, particularly in the current financial climate. Most people buying their home under the government’s Right to Buy Scheme are usually first time buyers with no experience of home purchase.
When it comes to the sale and purchase of properties purchased from a Local Authority, there are some things you need to be aware of:
- Ex-council properties usually fetch a lower price than privately built homes when being sold on for the first or second time.Depending on the type, condition and location of the council property, it is common for ex-council property to be worth between 15% and 40% less than similar privately built properties.
When it comes to selling, just like any other property, you need a good valuation. Make sure that you appoint an estate agent who is used to dealing with local ex-council. Putting a value on such homes, especially in an area where most council properties have not been sold, can prove awkward, there will only have been a limited market for such property and few, if any, similar properties to compare yours with.
Valuation is made more complicated by both improvements made to ex-council properties and the scope for such improvements to be carried out in future.
- Most purchasers of ex-council properties are first time buyers and so are often families with tight budgets and limited funds to purchase a home.
- To get the best value for ex-council properties, avoid pushing for a quick sale. As these properties are generally less popular than privately built properties, and with likely purchasers on limited budgets, pushing for an early sale is likely to reduce the potential sale price.
- In getting a value for your property, make sure that you speak to at least 2 or 3 estate agents. Beware automatically taking the agent who gives the highest valuation. It is not uncommon for some agents to over-value property purely to get the instruction – that’s the easy part; they may find difficulties when trying to sell at that price.
- Do make sure that you tell your agent how quickly you want to sell. The fact that a property needs to be sold quickly will inevitably reduce its potential sale value. With the property market currently picking up after a dreadful couple of years, now is a good time to look at a sale.