Voluntary Right to Buy Process
Update 17 September 2018 -The Government gateway website for registering your interest into the ballot to receive a unique reference number (URN) was open from 16 August to midnight on 16 September 2018 and is therefore now closed.
The government will decide when/if to re-open the ballot entry on their online gateway. You can keep up to date with the latest developments by looking on the Government’s Voluntary Right to Buy website www.midlands.rightobuy.gov.uk
In order to participate in the Midlands pilot of the Voluntary Right to Buy scheme you must follow the process below.
- Visit the Midlands Right to Buy website to register for the pilot and obtain your Unique Reference Number (URN)
- The gateway on the website will be open until midnight of the 16 September 2018
- A limited nuumber of URNs will be available and not every applicant will be able to receive one. Please note that even if you do receive a URN, there is no guarantee you will be able to buy your own home. This depends also on the eligibility of your home and its affordability to you.
- Applicants will be chosen at random by ballot after the gateway has closed. The ballot has been chosen to ensure fair distribution of the limited number of URNs.
Your URN is valid for 4 weeks from receipt. After that it will expire and you will no longer be able to apply.
- If successful, you can apply to us by downloading the application form for VRtB. You must remember to include your URN. You cannot apply unless you have a valid URN. It is a good idea to keep a copy of the completed form.
- Within four to eight weeks of receipt we will review your application form and evidenceyou have provided. We may then ask for further information. Once we are satisfied with the information you have provided we will contact you confirming whether you have the Voluntary Right to Buy and whether your property is available for purchase under our Right to Buy Policy.
- If your property is excluded by our policy but you are eligible, we will offer you the opportunity to port to an alternative property.
- If we accept your application and your property is available to buy we will notify you and you will then need to arrange for an appointment to bring in documents, pay an application fee for £250 and select a surveyor. You need to arrange this within 10 working days of receiving the acceptance letter. If you do not contact us within the time your application will be cancelled.
- Please note that the application fee is only refundable at the point of completion of the purchase.
- At the appointment you will be asked to select a surveyor to undertake the valuation of your home. We have a list of participating Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) qualified surveyors for you to choose from.
- Upon completion of the valuation, we will send you an offer notice. This offer notice will set out:
- The RICS qualified surveyor's valuation of your property*, your discount and the price you'll pay.
- Any structural problems the landlord knows about
- Any terms and conditions of the purchase.
- For leasehold properties only, your offer notice will also include details of the service charges that you will need to pay over the 12 months.
- You will then need to decide whether you want to go ahead with VRtB, as you have up to four weeks to accept the offer. It is during this time that you will need to arrange a mortgage or loan if you need one, get a survey, instruct a solicitor and get independent financial and legal advice if you have not already done so. It is important that you understand all costs involved before you accept the offer.
- If you do not respond within four weeks with your solicitors details your application may be cancelled.
- Once you are happy with our terms and have arranged payment for your home you can complete the purchase. It is usually during this time that you pay any stamp duty if applicable and finalise and sign all paperwork. Your solicitor should advise you and help with arrangements for these final stages of the process. This conveyancing stage should be completed within 12 weeks.
Step 1 – Register
Register in the ballot on the government-run ‘Digital Gateway’ website.
Step 2 – Ballot
The ballot will be open for one month, closing on 16 September 2018. If successful you will receive a unique reference number (URN). Without a URN we are not permitted to process your application.
Step 3 – Apply
Complete and return our online VRtB application form.
You will have 4 weeks to do this from date of receipt of your URN.
If at any time during the application process there is a suspicion of fraud or money laundering, we will suspend the application immediately to carry out investigations.
Step 4 – Eligibility checks
We will carry out eligibility checks on both yourself, any sharing family members that have applied and your property. If you are found not to be eligible your application will be rejected.
If you are eligible but your property is not we will attempt to help you find another property, to which you can use your discount to “port” to.
Step 5 – Applicant Interview
Following acceptance of your application, you will be asked to pay your £250 application fee.
You will be invited to attend a face to face interview at our Head Office, 70 High Street, Evesham. Any joint applicant(s) must be present.
At the interview you will be asked to confirm your choice of Valuer.
Step 6 - Property Valuation
A Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) qualified surveyor will value the property.
We will seek approval from Homes England.
Step 7 – Formal Offer
Following approval from Homes England we will issue an Offer of sale to you, detailing the sale price, discount and any service charge fees. You will then need to decide if you want to go ahead with the sale. You must confirm if you wish to proceed within 4 weeks.
It is during this time that you will need to arrange a mortgage or loan if you need one, get a survey, instruct a solicitor and get independent financial and legal advice, if you have not already done so.
It is important that you understand all costs involved before you accept the offer.
Step 8 – Conveyancing Process
From receipt of your acceptance, conveyancing begins. The conveyancing stage should be completed within 12 weeks.
Step 9 – Completion of Sale
Within 21 days of completion of sale you must register a legal charge at the Land Registry and provide a copy of the title to us.