Right to Buy

The Right to Buy Scheme

Right to Buy is a government scheme that allows council tenants to buy their council rented home at a lower price than the full market value.

Do I have the right to buy my council home?

If you are a secure tenant and have held a public sector tenancy for three years or more, you may be eligible to buy your council home at a reduced rate.

You will not be eligible to buy your council home if:

  • It is housing specifically provided for older people
  • It is housing specifically provided for disabled people (in certain cases)
  • You occupy the house in connection with your employment

Things to consider

When you think about buying your home, you should consider that there are costs and new bills that you will be liable to pay.

Once you own your home you will be responsible for your own repairs and maintenance costs and unless you are a cash buyer will have a mortgage to pay and if you buy a flat you will also have Service Charges and your proportion of any Major Works done to your block.

As part of buying your home, you will need to pay for a solicitor and conveyancing fees.

If you are currently in receipt of Housing Benefit or the housing element of Universal Credit you will no longer be able to claim this to pay your mortgage.

For further information please email right.to.buy@southampton.gov.uk.

Apply for the Right to Buy scheme

There is a government website just for the Right to Buy.

You can contact the government’s official Right to buy Agent Service by phone, email or web chat. The Agent Service is free and they offer impartial advice.

If you would like to exercise your right to buy your home, you can find out more information and fill out an application form online, or download an application form.

Completed application forms should be sent to:

Southampton City Council,
Right to Buy Team,
Central Local Housing Office,
100F St Mary Street,
SO14 1PE


The discount you get is dependent upon the valuation of the property and the length of your tenancy. The maximum discount is currently £96,000.

Is my property freehold or leasehold?

If you buy a house, you will purchase the freehold of the property outright.

If you buy a flat or a maisonette, you will purchase a long lease (125 years from the date that the first property in the block was sold).

The block will still be owned by the council and we will be responsible for the maintenance of the building, including any communal areas and facilities.

You will be charged the appropriate service charges every month.

You can find out more about being a leaseholder on our leaseholder pages.