Buying a Housing Executive house
Buying your Housing Executive home is similar to buying any other home. You will usually need to get a mortgage and contact a solicitor. When buying your Housing Executive home you must also complete the Housing Executive's application procedure.
The Right to Buy scheme allows you to buy a part of your home under an equity sharing scheme.
Buying a part of your home
In order to buy a part of your home, known as equity, you will need to fulfil all of the criteria as if you were buying your home outright.
If you are eligible for this scheme, you can now buy a minimum of 25% of your home and than increase your ownership over time in increments of 5 %. Buying additional equity is known as staircasing.
You will become an owner-occupier even if you buy the minimum 25% equity in your home. This means that you will be liable for maintenance of the property and other costs. However, you will still need to pay the rent to the Housing Executive for the remaining portion of your home.
If you are buying your home in shares of equity, you may still be eligible for a discount. The maximum amount of discount you can get will be related to the level of equity you buy.
Some examples of equity sharing prices and discounts are set out in the discount table on the Housing Executive website.
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Things to do before making your application
Check that the Housing Executive has carried out any outstanding repairs. The Housing Executive won't be responsible for any repairs after the sale. You may also want to get a structural survey to assess the condition of your property. Any problems will be taken into account when the Housing Executive value your property.
How do I apply to buy my home?
Contact your local Housing Executive District Office if you decide that you want to purchase your home. You must complete and return the application form.
The Housing Executive will send you a letter telling you that it has received your application within three days. Contact the District Office if you haven't received this confirmation.
You will get a letter within two weeks explaining if you application has been accepted or disqualified. The Housing Executive will then visit your home to value it. The Housing Executive should tell you the offer price within 12 weeks.
What happens after the Housing Executive has told me the offer price?
You have six weeks to decide if you want to buy your home. If you don't agree with the offer price you have four weeks to ask the Housing Executive to re-examine it.
When will I actually buy my home?
If you decide to go ahead with the purchase you will usually need to arrange a mortgage and contact a solicitor to deal with the Housing Executive. The sale of your home is not complete until both you and the Housing Executive have signed the contract. You must then complete the purchase within 10 weeks.
If you have rent arrears the sale can't be completed until you clear your arrears. The Housing Executive can also suspend your application if you are under investigation for antisocial behaviour.
Who is responsible for repairs before the sale goes through?
If you are buying the full equity of your home, the Housing Executive is responsible for repairs until you no longer pay rent. You can get repairs carried out by the Housing Executive until your mortgage cheque is released to the Housing Executive.
You may be able to ask the Housing Executive to:
- paint the outside of your accommodation,
- patch your roof,
- replace electrical fittings,
- replace plumbing fittings,
- replace your bath, sink or toilet,
- replace windows, doors or fireplaces.
If you are buying a share in your home, no matter how big or small, you will be responsible for repairs and maintenance, regardless of the rent you pay for the remainder of your home.
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Will the Housing Executive carry out improvements to my home?
The Housing Executive won't carry out any planned improvement work once you have made your application to purchase your home. These improvements may include:
- replacement of flat roofs by pitched roofs,
- installation of central heating,
- a kitchen extension.
The Housing Executive should give you the option of withdrawing your application until the improvements have been carried out, or continuing without getting the improvements. If you decide to withdraw, and then reapply after the improvements have been carried out the purchase price may increase.
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