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The Right to Acquire Scheme

By: Christine Whitfield BA (hons) - Updated: 15 May 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Right To Acquire Right To Buy Scheme

If you are a council tenant you may be eligible to buy your council house. This is because councils give tenants a secure tenancy. If you rent a housing association house then you do not have the Right to Buy. This is because housing associations give an assured tenancy agreement. An assured tenancy offers security for a certain amount of time, for example you could have an assured tenancy for 12 months.

However just because you do not live in a council property it does not mean you are completely ruled out from the possibility of buying your house. The initiative which helps housing association tenants buy their property is called the Right to Acquire initiative.

What is the Right to Acquire?

The Right to Acquire initiative is very similar to the Right to Buy scheme. The only difference is it applies to housing association tenants as opposed to council tenants. It was developed in 1996 but was updated in the Housing Act 2004. It gives tenants the right to buy their property at a reduced cost.

Who is Eligible to Apply for the Right to Acquire Scheme?

The Right to acquire scheme is available to all housing association or social landlord tenants so long as the landlord is taking part in the scheme. For the property to qualify for the Right to Acquire scheme it must have been built or bought by the social landlord after April 1997 (it could have been bought from the local authority after April 2007 too.)

Is the Right to Acquire Scheme Suitable for me?

The Housing Act 2004 states if you have been a tenant (i.e. lived in social housing) for at two years or more. This applied if you became a tenant before the 18th of January 2005. If you became a tenant in social housing after 18th January 2005 you are eligible for the Right to Acquire scheme only if you have been a tenant for five years or more.

However even if you do meet these criteria you will not be able to apply for the scheme if you have been declared bankrupt or if you landlord has filed a possession order against you.

What Discounts are Available? The discounts on offer through the Right to Acquire scheme vary. The size of the discount depends on where you live and ranges from around £9000 to around £16000.

How to I Apply for the Right to Acquire Scheme?

If you are interested in applying for the Right to Acquire scheme first you need to ensure you are eligible and your property qualifies. Once you know this you need to inform your landlord of your interest in entering the scheme.

Your landlord will then contact you to tell you how much you can buy the property for. If you still want to go ahead you must tell your landlord this within twelve weeks of receiving the price. It is then important to get legal help to ensure you are kept up to date with everything that happens so hire a solicitor. Your solicitor will then help you take the next step.

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Hi I have been in my house for over 20 years recently I applied for right to acquire as my landlord is a housing association who purchased local authority housing stock I have been informed that I neither have the right to acquire or the right to buy No right to buy as I signed my tenancy with housing association although my time spent on the list was with local council No right to acquire as the housing stock was purchased from the local authority before 1996 right to acquire cane in to force This would mean that 80% of the local housing stock is not available to own
Mab - 15-May-18 @ 12:22 PM
I have rented my housing assosiation home since 1995 can i aquire my home with a right to buy/aquire
Midds - 8-Apr-18 @ 9:14 PM
Hi, I would like to buy the home I've been in for the last ten years under the right to acquire scheme. I am currently saving in a help to buy isa account, would I get the government bonus if I were to buy this property? Or is the bonus only for a new home?
Rhi.rhi. - 8-Apr-18 @ 11:05 AM
Dee - Your Question:
I have a existing Mortgage and want to sell my house. I have over £50,000 equity in my home. I need to have that amount as retirement fund.My son needs a home; but is not ready to mortgage yet. Is there any way I can remortgage my home with him paying the mortgage with the option of me signing over the house to him when he is ready?

Our Response:
In order to get the equity from your house you would have to remortgage for the full amount (if eligible). Is your son ready to take on a part share of the mortgage to help? You would really have to seek professional financial advice here as it is a tricky situation with a few pitfalls to watch out for i.e if your son cannot pay or defaults, then the onus would be on you to meet the payments.
AffordableHomeAdvice - 23-Mar-18 @ 11:13 AM
I have a existing Mortgage and want to sell my house. I have over £50,000 equity in my home. I need to have that amount as retirement fund. My son needs a home; but is not ready to mortgage yet. Is there any way I can remortgage my home with him paying the mortgage with the option of me signing over the house to him when he is ready?
Dee - 22-Mar-18 @ 4:06 PM
I am with Asra housing association and was given valuation of 204 thousand and after 3 months they said it’s 234 thousand as Waac trying to find a solicitor and now it’s bed. 3 months they have given me deadline of 1st March and are chasing . I asked to do a desktop valuation they refused and have suggested can ask district valuer but then the price can go up or decrease or remain same . It’s my first time and don’t know what to do as the market is slow and does anyone know do I have to pay district valuer or the housing association pay . I am confused can someone help me. I delayed as there was an announcement that the government was going up match the discount with council . Can someone guide me on this issue it’s a one bedroom flat
Becky - 15-Feb-18 @ 12:51 PM
Hi i have lived in my housing association house since 1998. I have been told that i do not have right to acquire because the house is grant funded. Does anyone else have experience if this?
Tas - 13-Feb-18 @ 3:53 PM
We have the right to accuire but trying to find a mortgage to do this has been a nightmare we are having to put a hold on this again???????? they offer of a mortgage on right to buy is out there but not on right to accuire
Ema - 6-Feb-18 @ 3:46 PM
Me and brother lived all our lives he has the right to buy i don'tcan I make a joint claim to keep me safe so he does not just kick me out thanks
Maz - 29-Jan-18 @ 3:50 PM
I applied twice for the right to acquire the housing association house that I've lived in for the last 12 years with my husband and 2 children. Everything went well and we were eligible but we had to pull out the first time as my husband was made redundant. We decided to apply again November 2017 and were told we were eligible and they came and priced the house, after a few weeks the housing association rang and said sorry we can no longer buy the property because the value was too cheap... I don't understand this as it was cheaper the first time we applied it was just us that had to pull out. Something about this doesn't seem right to me and wondered if this was correct?
Chelsea - 4-Jan-18 @ 6:46 PM
LadyG - Your Question:
I've been a housing association tenant since 2000 but I've been informed that my property is not eligible to buy because it was built in 1981. I requested to be transferred to a property that I could buy but I was declined by my landlord.I would like to know what right have I got with the housing association because I am desperate to buy a property.

Our Response:
We can offer no more information than the gov.uk link here can tell you. Or what you have already been told through your housing association. You can contact the Government's Right to Buy Agent service via the link.
AffordableHomeAdvice - 12-Dec-17 @ 2:42 PM
I also put in my application in January 2015 but was informed that l will have to pay the repairs that were being carried out that's why I suspended till they complete all the repairs. But I've been informed that my property is not eligible to buy because it was built in 1981. I would like to know of that application form I sent to the housing association in 2015 is still valid.
LadyG - 12-Dec-17 @ 5:15 AM
I've been a housing association tenant since 2000 but I've been informed that my property is not eligible to buy because it was built in 1981. I requested to be transferred to a property that I could buy but I was declined by my landlord. I would like to know whatright have I got with the housing association because I am desperate to buy a property.
LadyG - 12-Dec-17 @ 4:56 AM
Matmo - Your Question:
I been an housing Association house tended since 2007 do I have right to acquire???

Our Response:
You can see whether you may be eligible via the gov.uk link here .
AffordableHomeAdvice - 5-Dec-17 @ 9:19 AM
I been an housing Association house tended since 2007 do I have right to acquire???
Matmo - 2-Dec-17 @ 8:56 PM
Hi I've been told by my housing trust that I can purchase the property under the right to acquire, not right to buy scheme. I moved in 2004. Previous to that I was with another housing association for 2 years and before that, a council tenant with a different council for previous 2 years. Is this information correct?
Tray13 - 29-Oct-17 @ 8:51 PM
hi , i am planning to buy the house i am renting from housing association thought right to acquire but been told that they will sell but without any discount , does the housing association has the right to refuse the discount? thanks
cris - 15-Oct-17 @ 8:57 AM
Naz - Your Question:
HelloI am urgently looking for an answer, please can someone help.I am planning to purchase my housing association property under the right to acquire scheme.But Will I be able to rent it out in due course.Have asked the housing association they are taking too long.

Our Response:
We cannot answer this question as it depends whether there is a no-sublet clause in your contract. You can see more via the CAB link here.
AffordableHomeAdvice - 12-Oct-17 @ 1:49 PM
Hello I am urgently looking for an answer, please can someone help. I am planning to purchase my housing association property under the right to acquire scheme. But Will I be able to rent it out in due course. Have asked the housing association they are taking too long.
Naz - 11-Oct-17 @ 11:57 PM
Hi we have got the right to aquire,however it's my partner who will be getting the mortgage but as he's not on the tenancy but classed as a family member buying we're finding it difficult to get the mortgage soley in his name?
Lisa - 29-Sep-17 @ 3:47 PM
I am a shared owner of 25% of my apartment througha Housing association. Can I use the right to acquire ?
Dnah - 22-Sep-17 @ 5:46 PM
Parents 30+yrs with housing association. Has either the right to buy or to acquire but im not sure which. Sadly 1 parent has just passed away but wanted to be scattered at property. The other really cant loose the property so wants 2 buy the property now but dont know how to. Remsininng parent is at pension age, so has low income but obviously wants to stay and buy because of the scattering of loved 1's ashes, the memories and history thats there. Its always been the family home to 4 and should really be kept. How can it be puchased without loosing any benefits or without having to add somebody to the occupancy for a year so they can buy it. The remaining parent needs to buy ideally that way if anythings happens it can be taken off them but can be left equally to the children now adults that grew up there. Its causing stress and upset and confusion we cant find the info needed. Can somebody help plz.
Sez - 18-Sep-17 @ 6:37 PM
Our property has been valued at 135k we get 10k discount. Under RTA, is the 10k count towards our deposit?
Nettz - 17-Sep-17 @ 10:31 AM
Hiwas told that my house which is a housing associationsdoes not fallunder the right to acquire scheme- I am aware I do not qualify due to my house was non funded by goverment grant or local authority . I have my doubts about this information . Can you confirm that this info is accurate and where can i find proof that my property was government or local authority funded housing associations. -.if itis, isthere anything that can be done - is there someone I can write to challenge the houding assoiciation decision because i have been living in the.property for over 8 years.Thank you.
Bobby - 10-Aug-17 @ 1:51 PM
We are currently looking at buying our housing association house. As far as I can tell we may only be entitled to the right to aquire and not the the right to buy as it is housing association. My question is if you use the right to aquire can you do it on a shared ownership basis or can it only be done on the full price of the house, minus the discount that you are entitled to?
Cerysellen - 9-Aug-17 @ 3:23 PM
Hi, I've been doing a lot of research on RTA and there's a lot of conflicting information on the web. I've been a housing association tenant for 5 years and would like to purchase my property under the RTA scheme. The issue is, my property is valued just under 300k and I am a single tenant on an average 28k salary. I can afford a 10% deposit. Would I get a mortgage for the rest or am I punching above my weight? And lastly, can the maximum discount of 16k from the RTA scheme be put towards my deposit aswell? Sorry for rambling on I feel quite deflated having waited for the RTB to extend but never materialised. Thank you
Naz - 2-Jun-17 @ 11:06 PM
Hi - I am aware I do not qualify due to my house being pre- 1997 (which makes utterly no sense at all!) ... But is there anything that can be done - is there someone I can write to? I have contacted the housing association even offering the market rate and they still will not allow us to buy. Also - is this a criteria that could be changed (the date issue) with the potential government reforms? Or am i holding out for something that is never going to happen?
SD - 26-May-17 @ 2:12 PM
Suzie1time - Your Question:
Hi,Your info says that you don't qualify for the scheme if you've been bankrupt. However, I've been advised that as long as it's been over 6 years since it was discharged and therefore no longer on your credit file, you do qualify. Which information is correct. Or do you mean you don't qualify if you're currently bankrupt. Thanks

Our Response:
It means an undischarged bankruptcy.
AffordableHomeAdvice - 18-May-17 @ 12:35 PM
Hi, Your info says that you don't qualify for the scheme if you've been bankrupt. However, I've been advised that as long as it's been over 6 years since it was discharged and therefore no longer on your credit file, you do qualify. Which information is correct. Or do you mean you don't qualify if you're currently bankrupt. Thanks
Suzie1time - 17-May-17 @ 8:28 PM
Jamie - Your Question:
Hi,Can you please help me answer this quick question - if my brother (who is a tenant) wants to buy with me, will he be able to if he has another property/mortgage?

Our Response:
If he has the finances to cover another mortgage and the mortgage company allows this, then yes.
AffordableHomeAdvice - 9-May-17 @ 11:27 AM
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