Right to Buy offers discounts of up to £75,000

120 of the 167 councils which have council properties have signed up for the opportunity to use the cash proceeds from the revamped Right to Buy scheme which was originally launched in the 1980's.

There are 2.5 million social tenants nationwide and if their local council has signed up to this scheme, they have the chance of receiving discounts on the market value of the property when buying their home.

Previously, the maximum discount depended on where you lived and ranged between £16,000 and £38,000. Now Right to buy has been revamped, tenants are able to receive maximum discounts of up to £75,000. The discounts are based on where you live, the type of property you are buying and how long you have been a tenant.

The Right to Buy discount could be reduced however if the tenant has previously made use of a discount to help them to buy a council home in the past.

Under the scheme, there will be a new affordable home to rent to replace every extra council property sold.

A person can apply for the Right to Buy if they have been a council tenant or public sector tenant for five years. Joint applications are also possible through Right to Buy if the tenants have lived together for at least the previous twelve months.

The agreement gives councils the freedom to decide on the type, the size and the location of the new homes they build according to the needs of the local area. Local councils signed up to Right to Buy also have the opportunitity to work alongside other organisations such as housing associations.

If the tenant who buys their council home decides to sell it within ten years of purchasing the property, the old landlord must have the first chance to buy the property back at full sale price. The landlord has eight weeks to decide whether to buy the property and after this time periodm the property can be advertised on the open market.

Housing Minister Grant Shapps said, "The reinvigorated Right to Buy has given hope back to thousands of aspiring council tenants who want to own their home - and for the first time, every extra home sold will be replaced on a one for one basis.

"So I'm pleased that 120 councils have seized this prime opportunity to refresh their housing stock by signing up to keep the cash from sales in their area.

"Not only will they be able to hand the keys to home ownership to their existing tenants, they will also be able to help families who for too long have been left languishing on their waiting lists."