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PROPERTY NEWS

Want to buy your council home? Want a £75k discount? Roadshow on how it works comes to Fulham hOME-OWNERSHIP WAS ONCE A PIPEDREAM, BUT IS NOW BECOMING REALITY FOR MANY. JON WEISGARD EXPLAINS THE CHANGES

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ore than 700 council tenants have passed through the doors at three Right to Buy roadshow events. H&F Council has held the roadshows to encourage people to find out if they are eligible for a discount of up to £75,000 on the price of their council home. Right to Buy has helped thousands of council tenants in H&F to buy their own home since it launched over 30 years ago. But completions under the scheme all but collapsed when the maximum discount in the capital was reduced in 2004 from £38,000 to £16,000. The move led to a slump from 245 Right to Buy sales in 2004-5 to only seven locally last year. However, the Government has recently reinvigorated the scheme by increasing the maximum discount to £75,000, leading to a flurry of interest in the borough. The council has already received more than 130 Right to Buy applications since the increase discount was introduced in April.

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That compares to just 39 in the whole of 2011. At last month’s roadshow, 189 tenants visited the White City Community Centre to find out if they were able to claim a discount. One such tenant was Julian Louisy of Coningham Road, Shepherds Bush, who said: “I received a leaflet from the council and saw the roadshows advertised in the paper and thought that I would pay a visit. “Buying my own council home

Each roadshow saw officers from the council’s dedicated Home Buy team calculating discounts that tenants are eligible for and advising them of the responsibilities that purchasing a home involves. Independent financial advisers were also on hand to help. Cllr Andrew Johnson, cabinet member for housing, said: “The extended Right to Buy discount is truly fantastic news for anyone who has ever dreamed of purchasing their own home but never thought that it would be possible. “There is absolutely no doubt that owning your own home gives you a sense of pride and Tenants a sense of empowerment.” explore The Right to Buy the possibility of roadshow heads to Maystar buying their homes Hall in Cheeseman’s after the discount Terrace, West Kensington, on amount change Saturday, July 28, from 10am PICTUREs BY KEVIN to 2pm. POOLMAN has always been The roadshow then travels on my mind but it to Fulham on Saturday, August has not been feasible 11, from 10am to 2pm, at the until now because the Clem Attlee Community Centre. discount was always so small. If you are unable to make it, but “Since the increase in the want to find out more about Right discount, I have been keen to to Buy email: h&fhome-buy@lbhf. find out more information. I did gov.uk or call 020 8753 6464. have an idea of the process, but To qualify, residents must meet the roadshow was very useful as certain criteria. For example the I was able to collect a lot more tenant must have been living in the information and speak to experts. property for at least five years. The I will probably be filling in an property must also be the tenant’s application form soon.” only or principal home.

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