When it comes to finding a home, it's not just a black
and white decision to rent or buy. With a range of ways 'in
between', there are other options you may not have thought or heard
Shared Ownership could be the key to a great new home at a price
you can afford - get on the property ladder and own your home in
What exactly is Shared
Shared Ownership is a Government backed part-rent, part-buy
scheme primariily for first time buyers although other purchasers
may qualify too.
You buy a share of a property - usually between 25% and 75%,
depending on your budget - and pay rent on the remainder, which is
still owned by a housing association such as Riverside.
Shared Ownership - buy your home one step at a time
What if I want to own outright
In most cases you can buy more shares
from the housing association in the future and eventually own 100%
of your home. This is known as 'staircasing' and is designed to
help you increase the portion you own when it suits you
financially. The more of your property you own, the less you pay in
Am I eligible?
If you have a household income below £80,000 per year and the
monthly mortgage, rent and service charges of the home are less
than 45% of your monthly take home income, you should qualify.
The scheme is to help first time buyers (or people buying after
a relationship breakdown), but speak to the housing association to
discuss your own circumstances to see if you'd be eligible.
What are the costs involved?
You'll be buying a percentage of the property, so you will most
likely need to take out a mortgage for this amount and make the
monthly repayments. You pay a monthly rent on the remainder to the
housing association who own the other shares. There is also a
monthly service charge which covers building insurance and if there
are any shared areas, in flats for example, the maintenance of
things such as lifts and car parks, and cleaning.
That sounds like a lot to pay out - isn't
it cheaper just to rent or buy?
Surprisingly, no. The rent you pay is reduced, so the combined
monthly costs are usually around 20% less than buying the same
property outright. It often works out cheaper than renting it
Aren't the properties built to a 'cheaper'
Not at all. In fact many people are surprised by the high
quality of Shared Ownership homes.
Shared Ownership properties are built to Homes England
government standards and designed to high specifications. This
means that Shared Ownership homes are sustainable and often run at
a lower cost in terms of energy bills than other new build
properties. Many of the associations that build Shared Ownership
schemes go the extra mile, providing interior features such as
heated towel rails and garden landscaping that would cost extra
from a commercial housebuilder. Affordability doesn't mean
Can I make my own home
Yes, you can decorate and carry out any general home
improvements you like. For bigger jobs like changing a kitchen, you
should speak to the housing association first as they still own a
portion of the property.
How involved is the housing
Day to day it's no different than if you owned your home
outright. Riverside Home Ownership, like some other associations,
also offers Shared Ownership schemes specifically for people over
55, where a range of support services also accompany the property.
The association will always be there to offer guidance and support,
should you need it.
Are Shared Ownership properties more
complicated to sell?
Not any more complicated than an average property. The new
shared owner buyer just needs to meet the same eligibility rules
that you did when you first bought.
I'm interested - what do I do
Browse our properties to see how to arrange a viewing, or visit
the local Help to Buy Agent website for the area you're looking in.
Help to Buy Agents have details of all the Shared Ownership
properties available in the regions, and for brand new properties,
you'll start your application through them.
Riverside Home Ownership's friendly, expert team can talk you
through all the options. Call 0345 112 8800 or email