Your Guide to Shared Ownership
Nearly half of all people living in London are eligible for Shared Ownership and don’t realise it. We’re here to help you make sense of the options, so you can find a home you love in the city you love.
What does Shared Ownership Mean?
Shared Ownership can make buying a home more accessible and more affordable. You buy a percentage of your home (which you pay a mortgage on) and pay subsidised rent to us on the rest (so we own a portion of it too). It’s more affordable because you’re buying a smaller share of the home, so you’ll have a smaller deposit and smaller mortgage to pay.
If you decide you want to own more of your home in the future you can; we’ll help you work out what share you can comfortably afford and talk you through how you can increase your share by staircasing.
Live in the city you love
When it comes to choosing a Shared Ownership home in London, local authorities have different criteria - for example, some prioritise those who already live and work in a borough. When you apply you can tell us which borough you’d prefer to live in and we’ll let you know if there’s any eligibility criteria you need to meet.
Live your way
Many people wonder if Shared Ownership means shared occupancy but it doesn’t; Shared Ownership simply means you own a share of your home and so do we. The space is completely yours to live life your way. You can decorate how you like, choose to live on your own or make a joint purchase - the choice is yours.
Renting Vs Buying
Usually, buying a Shared Ownership home costs about the same as renting a similar home privately. But with Shared Ownership you’ll have all the same rights as an owner-occupier, so there’s no landlord telling you how to live and you can make the space your own.
What are the monthly payments?
When you buy a Shared Ownership home you’ll have monthly payments to make including:
- Your mortgage (on the percentage of the property you own)
- Your rent
- Your service charge
- Annual ground rent
Let’s break the costs down:
Every month you’ll pay your mortgage, usually by direct debit, to your mortgage lender.
On the first day of each month you’ll pay rent to us by direct debit. Payment is taken directly from your bank account so it’s simple and convenient. On April 1st each year, your monthly rent will go up by a set amount as agreed in your lease - we’ll let you know this amount every February/March so you have plenty of notice.
Your Service Charge
This is calculated as a monthly rate and covers:
- Cost of general repairs to communal areas
- Cost of repairing and replacing communal lighting
- Cleaning communal areas (typically once a week)
- Maintenance and repair of communal entry door systems
- Gardening and grounds maintenance
- Lift maintenance (if applicable), servicing and repair including emergency telephone
- Management charge and audit fees
- Buildings insurance
- Reserve fund for cyclical decorations and major works
- Additional services, such as concierge service or amenities (if applicable)
This money is held in an interest-gathering bank account and is put aside to contribute to the cost of any cyclical decorations and/or major works to the block or estate. The fund is there to cover major works so that leaseholders aren’t given big bills for their share. There might be a shortfall at times; these will be recharged to leaseholders in accordance with terms of their lease.
Good to know
When you apply for a Shared Ownership home we’ll explain the terms of your purchase in more detail, which will include certain criteria such as:
- You can’t sublet your home
- You’ll need permission if you want to make any structural changes to a property
- You might need permission for pets if you’re buying an apartment