Share to Buy Week promotes affordable home ownership in London

Richard Blakeway Deputy Mayor for Housing, Land and Property (centre) at the launch of the Family Mo

Richard Blakeway Deputy Mayor for Housing, Land and Property (centre) at the launch of the Family Mosaic No Place Like Home campaign to coincide with the start of 2014 Shared Ownership Week. - Credit: Archant

As the average first time buyer deposit in London reaches more than £76,000, the advent of Shared Ownership Week in the capital is timely.

The event is designed to raise awareness of the scheme – which was introduced as long ago as 1980 to help people with modest incomes get a foothold on the housing ladder – and dispel some of the myths surrounding it.

The basic premise is that households earning up to £66,000, or £80,000 for families, can buy as little as a 25 per cent share in the market value of a newly built property.

Buyers have to contribute a five pc deposit on the share they are purchasing and subsequently pay a mortgage as well as a subsidised rent for the share they do not own each month. This can often work out cheaper than renting at market value.

Katie Bond, director at Notting Hill Home Ownership, one of the housing associations involved, said: “There is a misguided impression that Shared Ownership is designed simply for those on a lower than average income. It’s not.

“Shared Ownership exists to help the vast proportion of Londoners that cannot afford to buy outright and provide a more affordable option.

“The sad fact of the matter is that, with the ever inflating London house prices, even those with an income of £66,000 a year are still finding themselves priced out of their local market.”

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For those who want to find out more pop-up clinics for first time buyers will be held at developments, offering free, impartial advice on options for home ownership.

To be eligible for most properties through shared ownership, prospective buyers must live or work in the borough they wish to buy in.

This could make things tricky if you live and work in Camden, or similarly popular local authorities.

Lack of available development land and the high price of building in the borough mean that shared ownership options are scarce.

The situation is made even worse by the fact that people who manage to purchase property in the area tend to stay there, staircasing (buying more shares in a property) their way to full ownership if they can.

There are some options available however, including occasional second hand re-sales, and four developments in Camden are forthcoming.

Prince of Wales Road, The Joinery and Parkhurst Road are all available soon, with pricing to be decided in the near future.

Anyone considering shared ownership in Camden should register online, contact the housing provider with their details, via the website and they will be added to the waiting list for the property.

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