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  • Can I buy with members of my family?

    Yes. Any member of your family who is a joint tenant can buy with you. You can also share the Right to Buy with up to three other family members, as long as they have lived in the property for twelve months before you apply to buy.
  • Can other family members buy my home on my behalf?

    Family members can give you the money to buy your home. But the purchase will be in your name (the tenant) only. Family members who are giving you the money, but do not live with you, will not be included in any of the Right to Buy documentation.
  • How long does the Right to Buy process take?

    We will complete the initial stages of the application within a fixed period. For further information refer to the How to Buy my home process. Once you accept your offer and we pass documents to Legal Services, timescales can be more difficult to estimate and depend on tenants’ individual circumstances.
  • How does the Council value my home?

    Our Property Services team will contact you by telephone to make a valuation appointment. If they are unable to contact you, they will write to you giving you five working days to contact them to make an appointment. If you do not contact them following this your application will be withdrawn.

    Once we receive your valuation report and we have all the information we need we will send you your section 125 offer notice to you by post.

  • What type of valuation is it?

    The valuation we carry out is not a structural survey. As well as carrying out a valuation of your home, we will also carry out an energy performance inspection to find out how energy efficient your home is and give you an energy performance certificate.
  • What is an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)?

    All properties must have an EPC when they are sold and it is a document that tells you how we rate your home in terms of energy efficiency. If we do not already hold an EPC for your property one will be carried out once you accept your offer price.
  • Do I need to get a survey?

    We strongly recommend that you get a survey for your home. This can be either an RICS Home Buyers survey and valuation or a Building survey. If you are taking out a mortgage your mortgage company will insist that you have a survey of the property carried out
  • Do previous tenancies with other authorities and housing associations count towards my discount entitlement?

    Yes. You can claim periods of time with other authorities, housing associations and the armed forces. You will need to contact your former landlords and get proof from them of the start and end date of these tenancies and give a copy of this to us.
  • Am I still entitled to repairs to my home?

    While you have an active RTB application and you report a repair, a decision must be made by the member of staff taking the repair on whether the repair should be carried out. Generally, there is an obligation on the council to carry out wind and watertight repairs and maintain essential services.
    The following repairs come into this category:
    • Roof leaks/missing tiles or slates
    • Dangerous chimney stack/pots
    • Overflow gushing
    • Broken windows - cracked windows should be inspected by Housing Maintenance Officers first
    • Significant water penetration at doors and windows

    Additionally, the council is obliged to carry out all qualifying repairs under the tenant's right to repair as follows:
    • Blocked flue to open fire or boiler
    • Blocked or leaking foul drains, soil stacks or toilet pans
    • Toilet not flushing
    • Blocked bath, basin or sink
    • Total or partial loss of electric power
    • Insecure external window, door or lock (including window safety catches)
    • Leaks or flooding from water or heating pipes, tanks or cistern
    • Total or partial loss of gas supply
    • Total or partial loss of space or water heating
    • Unsafe electrical fittings, power or lighting sockets
    • Total or partial loss of water supply
    • Loose or detached banister or stair treads
    • Dangerous floorboards or stair treads
    • Mechanical extractor fan in internal kitchen or bathroom not working

    If your repair is listed above, please contact the Repairs Centre on 0191 278 7878.
  • Will you carry out major works to my home?

    If you are a potential leaseholder we will carry out external works to your home under the major work programme. A proportion of the costs of these works may be taken into account when your property is valued, and be reflected in the overall cost you pay for your home.

    If you are a potential freeholder, we will not carry out any external works to your home under the major work programme. If you withdraw your Right to Buy after the project has started, it may not be possible to include your home in these works. Your home may need to be included in a later project as a one off. If after improvement works are completed and you reapply for your Right to Buy the works may have changed the value of your property.

  • What is the difference between freehold and leasehold?

    If you live in a house your home is a freehold property. This means that if you buy you will buy your home and the land that you currently rent.

    If you live in a flat or maisonette your home is a leasehold property. This means that if you buy your home we will sell you either a full 125 year lease or part of a 125 year lease. Newcastle City Council will still own your home and the land that you currently rent.

    If you are a leaseholder we will charge you a yearly management fee and service charge, which may be thousands of pounds, as well as any routine repairs and major work.

    The Governments ‘Thinking of buying your council flat?’ booklet contains a lot of useful information on buying a leasehold property which is available here:

    Thinking of buying your council flat

  • Can I withdraw my application if I no longer wish to buy?

    Yes. You can withdraw from the Right to Buy at any stage of the process, right up until the day of completion. If you wish to withdraw from the purchase you need to write to us or email us.
  • I currently have rent arrears - can I apply to buy my home?

    Yes. You can still apply to buy your home if you have rent arrears, but your rent account must be clear on the day of completion. If your rent account is in arrears on the purchase day then your sale will not complete.
  • Will I lose my housing benefit if I buy my home?

    If you buy your home you will not get housing benefit. Even if you are on income support you will not get any help towards the cost of mortgage repayments. If you have been receiving income support for 13 weeks you may qualify for help but only towards the interest on the mortgage.
  • Will I have to pay for a rent reference if I’m getting a mortgage?

    Yes. There is a £50 charge if you request a rent reference from us
  • Can a Demolition Notice be served on my property whilst I have a current Right to Buy?

    Yes. A notice can be served while there is a Right to Buy application. The Right to Buy does not apply if a ‘final demolition notice’ has been served.
  • Why do I have to provide identification documents?

    Buying a property is a legal process and we must be able to confirm that all applicants are who they say they are and have lived in the property for 12 months before they have applied for the right to buy. Without providing this information we will not proceed with your application.

      Details of the acceptable documents is available here.

  • Why do I need to complete an anti-money laundering form?

    We have to comply with money laundering regulations and be aware of potentially fraudulent right to buy applications by asking all applicants who accept their offer of sale to provide detailed information of how they intend to fund the purchase of their property, where the money is coming from as well as asking for details of any other properties that they may own or rent.

      Providing false or misleading information or omitting information may be regarded as a criminal offence and action could be taken against you including prosecution. We will check all information that is provided and may ask for further clarification from you before proceeding with the sale.

      If you fail to complete the anti-money laundering form or provide supporting information your sale may be delayed or your application withdrawn.
  • Does Your Homes Newcastle advise on money issues?

    No, we cannot advise as we are not qualified financial advisors.

    You can contact Newcastle City Council's Money Matters service on 0191 277 1050 for money advise, or visit the Money Matter website.

  • Why do I have to use a solicitor?

    A Solicitor needs to be appointed to act on your behalf and deal with the legal side of your purchase. You are required to provide us with your solicitor’s details at the point of accepting your offer if you wish to proceed with the sale of the property.

    If you are taking out a mortgage to purchase the property your mortgage provider will insist that a solicitor is appointed. However if you are paying in cash you are still required to appoint a solicitor to act on your behalf so that we can ensure that all anti-money laundering checks have been carried out on the funds that you will be using to pay for the property.

    We will not proceed with the sale if you do not provide us with solicitor’s details.