What is Shared Ownership?

Shared Ownership

Shared ownership - Creating great places to live your life.

Image of a person who has purchased their own homeAt Optivo we’re investing in a future where a great home is within everyone’s reach.

If you’re struggling to get your foot on the housing ladder, shared ownership may be a great option for you to get started.

We’ve got a wide selection of properties available to purchase as part of shared ownership schemes throughout London, the Midlands and the South East.


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How does shared ownership work?

Buying a shared ownership home means you can purchase between 25% and 75% of a property from us. You don't need such a big deposit, which makes it more affordable.

You’ll pay a monthly rent for the share of the property that we still own. Your mortgage and rent may be less than if you bought the property outright.

For example, buying a 40% share in a property means you need to pay a deposit and mortgage on the 40% share you own and then pay rent on the 60% of the property we own.
 

Want to increase your share?

You can choose to buy additional shares in your property as and when you can afford to. This process is called staircasing.

In most cases, you can eventually own 100% outright. At this point, you own the property and will no longer pay any rent. If you’re in an apartment, or a house with communal areas, you’ll still pay service charges.

Find out more about increasing the share you own.

What happens when you want to sell your home?

If you own a share in a property through a shared ownership scheme with us and would like to sell, then the process is fairly straight forward.

Find out more about what you need to do to sell your home.
 

Am I eligible for a shared ownership home?

In order to buy a shared ownership home you must meet certain criteria:
  • You must be at least 18 years old
  • Outside of London your annual household income must be less than £80,000
  • Within London your annual household income must be less than £90,000.
  • You should generally be a first time buyer (you don’t already own a home). If you do already own, you must be in the process of selling
  • You must show you are not in mortgage or rent arrears
  • You must be able to demonstrate that you’ve a good credit history (no bad debts or County Court Judgements) and can afford the regular payments and costs involved in buying a home
  • You should have savings of at least £4,000 to cover the costs of buying a home. This is a guideline figure – the actual amount you need will depend on the property you buy.

How do I apply?

If you’re in a position to buy, with savings available to cover solicitor and mortgage fees and you meet the above criteria for shared ownership, you can apply.

If you live in the South East or the Midlands your next step is to register with your local Help to Buy Agent, either HelptoBuy East & South East or HelptoBuy Midlands. If you're interested in homes in the Greater London area there's no need to register.

Contact us for further information or advice if you are interested in buying a shared ownership home.

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You might also find this handy guide on Shared Ownership useful. It's been put together by the g15, a group of the 15 largest housing associations in London and the South East.      
 

Dan and Katie's story: Buying a home through Shared Ownership

image: Dan ands Katie outside their new home"It’s lovely walking through the door and knowing this is ours and we don’t have to move in a year. We’ve done a bit of decorating and it’s nice to know we’re able to paint the walls how we want. This was the first property we viewed and we were really lucky to get it.”


"The great thing about Shared Ownership is you don’t need a giant deposit. How long would it have taken us to save a £30,000 deposit, especially when we’re paying around £1,000 a month in rent? It’s crazy and unrealistic. With Shared Ownership it allowed us to have a tangible goal.”


Read Dan & Katie's story