When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Applying for right to buy

Once you've been a tenant for 5 years you may be able to buy your home.  The amount of discount you'll get increases depending on how long you've lived in the property.  Some property types can't be bought because they are difficult to come by and needed for social housing stock. 

Tenants who can buy their home

If you’ve been a Housing Executive or housing association tenant for 5 years you can apply to this scheme.  If you’re a joint tenant, all other joint tenants must

  • be included in the purchase or
  • agree to the sale.

You might still be able to apply if you haven’t been a tenant for 5 years, as long as you’re applying to buy a tenancy that was given to you or that you inherited from the previous tenant.

Buying your home with someone else

You can buy the house with your spouse or partner or with someone who has been living with you in the property for the last 12 months. Up to 4 people can apply to buy the property. 

Not all properties can be sold

You can’t buy certain types of Housing Executive or housing association properties, including:

  • 1 and 2 bedroom ground floor accommodation
  • sheltered housing.

These types of properties are excluded from the scheme because they are usually reserved for people who have disabilities or who are frail.  Because these properties are always in demand and hard to come buy, social landlords need to keep them in their housing stock.

Before applying to buy

Before you apply to buy your home, make a list of any outstanding repairs and make sure your landlord has these sorted out.  Once the sale completes, you’ll be responsible for all future repairs.