Babergh announces help to by scheme

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Tenants of who would like to buy their own home could be a step closer following the launch of a new scheme called HomeOwn.

Babergh District Council, alongside Mid Suffolk District Council, was successful in applying for funding from the Government’s £84m Right to Buy Social Mobility Fund, which was launched earlier this year.

The scheme enables local authorities to make one-off payments to council tenants of up to £20k as a cash incentive to buy a property for the first time.

This two-year funding opportunity is aimed at those who are eligible for the “right to buy scheme” and wish to buy a property on the open market.

Jennie Jenkins, leader of Babergh District Council, said: “It’s excellent news that both councils were successful in gaining the Government funding as this will give some tenants access to a choice of homes on the open market which they may not normally be able to afford.

“One of our strategic priorities is housing. We’re jointly responsible for about 7,000 council properties and work in partnership with a number of social landlords who are key and valued partners in many of our housing projects.”

To apply for the incentive, tenants in one or two bedroom properties will need to show that the purchase of a property on the open market will be a sustainable one.

They will need to have a clear rent account for the past 12 months, be purchasing a property that meets their current housing needs (all of the household must move into the new property) and prove that they can re-pay a mortgage.

If approved, the funds would then be released to the solicitor on completion once the council property is empty.

The scheme is however limited to a maximum of 10 tenants in Babergh.

•For further information about the HomeOwn scheme, please telephone the Right to Buy Team on 01449 724753.