Shared Ownership Week 2014 brings good news for London first time buyers

Promoting wider understanding of the lower cost home ownership scheme

Pictured: Richard Blakeway Deputy Mayor for Housing, Land and Property at the launch of the Family Mosaic No Place Like Home campaign with a Wizard of Oz inspired double-decker Routemaster bus, on London’s Southbank to coincide with the start of 2014 Shared Ownership Week.

Today (20 October 2014) marks the beginning of Shared Ownership Week 2014; an awareness initiative supported by The Mayor of London, to promote wider understanding of the lower cost home ownership scheme and how more Londoners can secure a foothold on the property ladder.

First introduced in 1980, Shared Ownership enables buyers to purchase a smaller share of a property – as little as 25% of its market value – and pay a deposit of just 5% of this share.

London’s leading housing associations, including Family Mosaic, L&Q, Newlon Home Ownership and Notting Hill Home Ownership, have joined forces with The Mayor to launch the dedicated campaign, demystify the scheme and, ultimately, set more Londoners on the road to home ownership. 

There will be a variety of activities hosted throughout the week, including pop-up First Time Buyer clinics at popular London Shared Ownership developments such as Greenwich Square and Camberwell Fields. The drop-in style clinics will offer free and impartial expert advice on home ownership and the options available. A new Shared Ownership tour bus will also be making its debut at the South Bank to celebrate the launch of Shared Ownership Week 2014. 

The week-long awareness campaign comes as the Capital’s average property price exceeds £500,0001 and its private rented population grew by more than double the rate of the rest of England (1.4% compared to 0.7% respectively).

Shared Ownership is now a popular option among a broad range of first time buyers, from young single professionals to families, and has helped over 200,000 households across the UK into home ownership3.

In London, the scheme represents the cornerstone of The Mayor’s FIRST STEPS programme. It is available with homes in every borough, offering those earning anything up to £66,000 (£80,000 for family properties) a more affordable route into home ownership. It tackles the key financial challenges faced by the large majority of the Capital’s first time buyers: mortgage requirements and deposit amount. 

With Shared Ownership, buyers can secure a mortgage for a smaller share of a property’s open market value (between 25 – 75%) based on what they can afford. It then offers the opportunity to increase their shares as their earnings rise and gradually ‘staircase’ their way to full home ownership at a manageable pace.

A subsidised rent is paid on the remaining share, typically around 3% of the total value. In most cases the total monthly repayments are equal to, or lower, than rental costs for an equivalent property. 

The minimum deposit required is just 5% of the share being purchased, as opposed to the full market value. Last year, Shared Ownership buyers in London paid an average deposit of £12,3754, compared to the average first time buyer deposit of over £76,0005.

For further information Shared Ownership Week 2014 and the properties available, and the First Time Buyer clinics, visit London’s gateway to shared ownership at www.sharetobuy.com/firststeps.

 

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