1. Overview

Right to Buy allows most council tenants to buy their council home at a discount. Use the eligibility checker on the Right to Buy website to find out if you can apply.

There are different rules for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

You can apply to buy your council home if:

  • it’s your only or main home
  • it’s self-contained
  • you’re a secure tenant
  • you’ve had a public sector landlord (eg a council, housing association or NHS trust) for 3 years - it doesn’t have to be 3 years in a row

Joint applications

You can make a joint application with:

  • someone who shares your tenancy
  • up to 3 family members who’ve lived with you for the past 12 months (even if they don’t share your tenancy)

Ex-council homes

If your home used to be owned by the council, but they sold it to another landlord (like a housing association) while you were living in it, you may have the Right to Buy. This is called ‘Preserved Right to Buy’.

Ask your landlord if this applies to you.

Other ways to buy your home

If you weren’t living in your home when it was sold by the council you may still be able to buy it through the Voluntary Right to Buy pilot if both the following are true:

  • you live in a housing association property in one of the scheme’s local authority areas
  • you’ve been a public sector tenant (usually of a housing association or council) for a total of at least 10 years