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Rent to Home Buy

Rent to Home Buy

‘Rent to Home Buy’ is a government scheme designed to ease the transition from renting to buying a home by providing subsidised rent

With ‘Rent to Home Buy’, you rent a home at approximately 20% below the market rate for up to five years (exact period of time varies by property and outlined within your tenancy agreement). During that time period, you have the option at any time to buy the property outright or to buy part of the property under a Shared Ownership scheme. It may be less expensive than you think to do this so if you are a current resident under our ‘Rent to Home Buy’ scheme and would like further information on purchasing your property, please contact our Sales Team.

Homes under this scheme are made available to rent with an assured shorthold tenancy at a reduced rate of 80% the local market rent. The expectation is that this shorthold period of paying less rent gives you the chance to save for a cash deposit so you can apply to buy a share of the home later.

Service charges may also be payable for your property to cover your contribution towards the maintenance and upkeep of any communal areas such as grounds maintenance. Your tenancy agreement will provide full details.

You will be required to undertake a full financial assessment to demonstrate you can fully meet the rental payments and have sufficient income to cover the 20% saving towards the future deposit on purchasing the home. During the lifetime of your tenancy we will periodically require evidence that you are contributing to a savings scheme and progressing towards purchasing your home. You will be expected to be in full-time employment to be eligible for this scheme. Please contact our Sales Team for further details on the application process.

During your tenancy, Together Housing as your landlord is responsible for most repairs and maintenance to your property including structural repairs, boiler repair and maintenance, plumbing etc. You are required to carry out some minor repairs yourself such as replacing light bulbs, blocked sinks etc as outlined within your tenancy agreement.

Repairs can be reported by calling your local Customer Service Centre.

Terminating your Rent to Home Buy tenancy

If your circumstances change during your Rent to Home Buy tenancy and you are no longer able to consider purchasing, you will need to submit written notice of your termination in accordance with the notice period in your tenancy agreement.

This can be submitted by contacting us here, or by calling your local Customer Service Centre.

Notice

Once we have received your written termination notice submitted in accordance with your tenancy agreement, we will contact you to arrange a suitable time to carry out a pre-termination visit and confirm your termination date.

During the pre-termination visit we will check the current condition of your property against the original inventory that was taken at the point that you signed up for the property and agree any repairs/decorations/cleaning that you need to carry out before your tenancy ends.

We will discuss your rent and service charge account and any amounts due. At the start of your tenancy you will have paid a deposit to us. We will discuss the repayment of this deposit and whether there are any deductions to be made in accordance with your tenancy agreement for any damages or unpaid rent/service charges.

Property

It is important that you leave the property in a condition which allows us to immediately re-let, and to ensure that you receive a full refund of your deposit.

This means:

  • Clean and clear any rubbish and unwanted items
  • Repairing any damage
  • Replacing anything you have removed or changed that was part of the property
  • Cleaning of any white goods provided as part of your tenancy, ie, ovens and hobs
  • Leaving the garden clear and tidy
  • Returning all sets of keys or fobs for access to communal areas
  • Redecoration as required

Utilities (gas, electricity and water) – remember to take the final meter reading on the day your tenancy ends and to inform your suppliers that you are going.  It is your responsibility to do this and you don’t want to risk becoming responsible for any bills after you have left.

Post – please arrange redirection with the post office.

Phone and internet – please contact your provider to cancel or transfer your account.

Forwarding address – don’t forget to pass your new address to us in case we need to reach you.

Keys – we will discuss key returning arrangements when we meet with you at the pre-termination visit.  However, please note that all keys are due at our offices at the latest by 12:00 midday on the day after your tenancy ends.  Rent and service charges will be charged for each of the days following this time for keys not received. 

Rent/Service Charges

You must pay all rent and service charges due up to and including the termination date.

If you pay by direct debit, your Home Ownership Officer will agree any arrangements for this during your pre-termination visit (please see the ‘Notice’ section for further details of the pre-termination visit).

Are you sure you want to go?

If there is a problem that is making you want to leave and you think we may be able to help, for example, a repair problem or anti-social behaviour, or if you are having trouble paying your rent or managing debts, why not look at the advice and useful information on this website or contact us and ask to speak to your Home Ownership Officer and we will try to assist and advise you.

Moving out is not always the best solution and it’s important to consider other options first.

Dealing with the Death of a Tenant

If you are dealing with the affairs of a relative or friend who was a Rent to Home Buy tenant with Together Housing and has passed away, may we firstly offer condolences for your loss. The following information should help you in dealing with the tenancy.

We will need a copy of the death certificate as soon as you are able to provide one – without this we are not able to end the tenancy.

If the late tenant was in receipt of Housing Benefit to help with paying their rent, this ends on death. This means that if you need to keep the keys for a while in order to clear the property, full rent and service charges will continue to be charged. This money will be owed from the estate of the late tenant. Please contact us to arrange for this to be cleared, or let us know and we will try to help.

The notice period outlined in the tenancy agreement applies, however, the tenancy will end if you hand the keys in earlier than this. This will reduce the amount of rent and service charges to be paid from the estate. Please let us know as soon as possible when you intend to hand the keys in.

Once the property is clear, please contact us to arrange handover of the keys

If you are having trouble removing furniture items, help may be available via local charities such as The British Heart Foundation, websites like Freecycle or through the local authority’s cleansing department.

If you require further advice, or are unsure what to do, please contact us.

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