Shared ownership still an option

With the housing market still in a lethargic state, and mortgages on properties in the Capital seemingly only for those that don’t seriously have to think about getting a job to get by, where does the young professional or the young married couple, trying to make a living in London, turn to for decent accommodation?

Gazumping rears its ugly head

The news that gazumping has now been transferred to the letting sector must be a frightening prospect for the thousands of young people who flock to London to further their fledgling careers. The thrill of landing a job at a prestigious company is now being tempered by the fact that one cannot afford to live anywhere near their place of employment.

Shared ownership better than shared bills?

The rental sector is booming and rents are escalating almost month on month. To find a place of your own in and around London under £1,200.00 a month is becoming nigh on impossible, and for those that hate the thought of flat sharing and working out who owes what and to whom for the monthly home insurance and utility bills, then anything else is worth considering. A young reporter on a national newspaper recently investigated the options available to young professionals ensconced in London and found that shared ownership schemes, once the flagship, future answer to property affordability are still alive but not exactly a cheap option.

The idea of shared ownership has been around for some time and the idea is that people with aspirations of owning their own homes, be they single or couples, but not having the resources to raise a deposit big enough to purchase on their own, buy a percentage of a home with the builder of the property owning the rest. The scheme is designed with the idea that gradually the part owner has the resources to buy the remaining percentage from the builder although this is not compulsory.

Scheme fraught with danger?

Without doubt the idea is good but participants in the schemes do not find the outlay, especially in the early years, too easy to find. Although it is a shared ownership scheme, such things as repairs to the property and household insurance have to be found by the incumbent. This coupled with the fact that the owner is buying a house on the cusp of affordability means many of the arrangements are financially fragile.

The intrepid reporter found that an income of at least £40,000 a year was required for a quarter share of anything decent in Central London plus of course a sizeable deposit. The schemes though are by no way unpopular because the rental situation is so bad


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