Repayment of discount
If you have bought your home under the Right to Buy, you can sell it whenever you like. But if you wish to sell within the discount repayment period specified below you will usually have to repay some or all of the discount.
If you sell within the first year of purchase, the whole discount will have to be repaid. Four fifths must be repaid if you sell in the second year, three fifths in the third year, two fifths in the fourth year and one fifth in the fifth year. After 5 years, you can sell without repaying any discount.
In addition, the amount of discount to be repaid if you sell within 5 years of purchase will be a percentage of the resale value of the property, disregarding the value of any improvements. For example, if your home was valued at £100,000 at the time you bought it from your landlord, and you received a discount of £20,000, that means that your discount was 20 per cent.
If your home is valued at £150,000 when you wish to sell it, and you want to sell within the second year of purchase, you will have to repay £150,000 x 20 per cent discount x 4/5 i.e. £24,000.
Certain sales or transfers are exempt from the requirement to repay discount, eg transfers between certain family members. In addition, if you would face hardship by having to repay discount, and your circumstances justify it, your landlord can decide not to ask you to pay some or all of what you owe.
If in advance of your purchase, or within the discount repayment period, you enter into an agreement to transfer your property to a third party in the future, then this will trigger repayment of your discount. Discount repayment is triggered from the date that you enter into the agreement. So, for example, if you enter into such an agreement before you have bought the property or during the first year after buying, you will have to repay the full amount of discount you received.