Shared ownership

What is the Shared ownership scheme?

The shared ownership scheme is a government first-time buyer and home mover scheme whereby you can buy part ownership of a home and pay rent on the rest.

You can buy between 25% to75% of the shares in the property initially and then buy more shares at a later time through a process known as staircasing.

To be eligible for the shared ownership scheme you will need to meet the following requirements.

To be eligible for the shared ownership scheme you will need to be a first-time buyer or a home mover who cannot afford to buy a new home without the scheme and is in the process of selling their home.

You also need to have a combined household income of £90,000 in London and £80,000 outside London to be eligible for the shared ownership scheme.

To be eligible for the shared ownership scheme you will also have to prove that you are not in any mortgage or rent arrears.

You will also need to be a UK resident and at least 18 years of age.

Military personnel may also be given more priority over other groups and if you have a disability then you may be eligible for the shared ownership scheme through the home ownership with long term disabilities scheme.

Old people may also have some priority through the old people's shared ownership scheme.

What you need to know about the shared ownership scheme:

You can buy more shared in your shared ownership property through a process known as staircasing.

The shares will be sold to you at the current market value of the property. You must continue to pay rent until you own the new shares you intend to purchase.

You can also sell the shares in your shared ownership property but the housing association or your landlord will need to agree on a minimum price at which you can sell your shares.

The shared ownership landlord will also have first refusal on the sale of the shares in the property and if they then refuse to make an offer or take up this right of first refusal you can then sell this house on the open market but only to someone who is eligible for the shared ownership scheme. The housing association or landlord will usually advertise the property to a list of eligible buyers who are currently on the waiting list.

Shared ownerships could have high service charges and ground rent due to the fact that they are leasehold properties.

Shared ownership mortgages

With a shared ownership scheme you will usually need a 5% mortgage deposit for most mortgage lenders to lend to you. A shared ownership mortgage broker may be able to assist you in getting shared ownership mortgage.

Shared ownership properties have a variety of pros and cons which you may want to consider.

Alternative government schemes to the shared ownership scheme

They are:

  • Lifetime ISA- gives you a government bonus of £1,000 if you save the maximum £4,000 a year.
  • Help to buy ISA- gives a maximum bonus us £3,000 if you save the maximum allowed of £12,000. Before you get either you should consider which is better. Lifetime ISA vs Help to buy ISA.
  • Help to buy equity loan- gives you up to 40% as a 5-year interest-free equity loan. You begin to pay interest at 1.75 % after the fifth year and 1% plus RPI for every year thereafter.
  • Shared ownership- You can buy between 25% to 75% of the property initially with a shared ownership mortgage and then buy more using a staircasing mortgage.
  • Armed forces help to buy- similar to the help to buy equity loan but specific for the armed forces personnel giving them an increased chance of acceptance.
  • Rent to buy- This is the right to buy scheme on which this guide is currently discussing. A different marketing name is just used. Watch out for this when shopping to avoid missing out on eligible properties due to confusion.
  • Right to buy- allows you to buy your home at a discount price.
  • Preserved right to buy- same as above.
  • Right to acquire- same as above.

You may also be able to use a host of mortgages with the help of your family.

They are a certain type of mortgage known as a family springboard mortgage, they include mortgages from lenders such as the Barclays family springboard mortgage, the lloyds lend a hand mortgage or the post office family link mortgage.