Shared ownership homes with St Arthur Homes

The 10 Shared Ownership Myths to Dismiss

on 18 November 2022

Shared ownership isn’t new, but with so many myths out there, it’s certainly considered a grey area amongst many aspiring homeowners. We’re keen to right the wrongs and provide more clarity on the scheme, so we’re shining a light on 10 common misconceptions.

10 shared ownership myths and questions

Myth 1: “If your property requires mandatory construction works, you are 100% liable for maintenance despite partly owning [your home].”

Answer: Under the new Shared Ownership model (effective in 2021), the building works of new build homes are protected by The Housing provider for the first 10 years of ownership. There is also a developer New Build Warranty in place for 10 years and you will have the benefit of the developer defect period.

Before the new Shared Ownership model (2021), the responsibility for repairs & maintenance was solely on the Leaseholder.

Myth 2: “It’s incredibly difficult to buy the rest of the house. This must be done in 10% increments.

Answer: You can staircase in 1% increments (subject to Lease terms) or up to 100% in one go.

Myth 3: “Service charges are uncapped”

Answer: Most of our homes have uncapped service fees but we’re aware of the economic climate and that affordability is a key reason behind why many of our customers choose to buy using a shared ownership scheme. We are committed to working with our housing partners to keep our service charges realistic and affordable, and this is reviewed yearly.

Myth 4: “If you want to buy more shares of your home, you have to pay both parties’ legal fees.”

Answer: Both parties are responsible for their own legal fees since it became possible to purchase additional smaller shares of your property, such as 1%. This is a change which came into effect in 2021 when new Lease terms were announced as part of the Affordable Homes Programme (AHP).

Myth 5: “It’s better to keep saving for the deposit of a traditional mortgage than buy using a shared ownership scheme, even if it takes you 5+ years.”

Answer: A traditional mortgage will always require considerably more funds than those required to buy a percentage of a home through a shared ownership scheme. The shared ownership scheme will allow you to step onto the property ladder quicker and you’ll be able to buy more shares as and when you can afford them. If you choose to take this approach in the current economic climate, you’ll be investing your money in property when inflation is high – and there’s no denying that’s far more attractive than paying your private landlord’s ever increasing rent fees!

The current economic climate means that Shared Ownership homes are in demand!  With more home buyers struggling to buy a home via a traditional mortgage scheme, the demand for buying a more affordable home using the Shared Ownership scheme is on the rise.

No matter how turbulent the economic climate is, combining the monthly cost of a 40% Shared Ownership mortgage and rent will continue to cost less than traditional monthly mortgage costs.

Myth 6: “Shared Ownership means I share my home with someone?”

Answer: No! – unless you really want to or are buying with someone. Shared Ownership means you share ownership with the housing provider, in this case, St. Arthur Homes, but you still have all the normal rights as an outright homeowner. With St. Arthur Homes you buy a minimum percentage share depending on the development you choose. Once you are settled in and when you can afford to, you can increase your percentage share, known as staircasing, at any point until you own 100% of the property. You just need to contact us and we can do the rest! <p> 

Myth 7: “You need a lot of savings for a deposit?”

Answer: When compared to Help to Buy and the open market, in general Shared Ownership offers the opportunity to purchase a property using a much lower-level deposit – in some cases even as little as 5% of the share you are buying and not the full asking price. As an example, you can currently purchase a 35% share in one of our two-bedroom semi-detached homes at Scholar’s Green in Essex for £148,750 – the deposit you would need would be £7,438.

Myth 8: “ Getting specification from my Shared Ownership home is complicated”

Answer: At St. Arthur Homes helping get people onto the housing ladder is at the heart of what we do and offering high-quality homes that are the same standard and specification as private sale homes and are also affordable is what sets us apart. We only work with developers and partners that are well-experienced in what they do and build first rate properties that are uncompromising and enjoy an internal specification that any other home would have. In fact, we go one step further and give our buyers a choice on certain products and finishes too on selected developments! To find out more information on the interior specification we offer across our homes you can visit our current property page here.

Myth 9: “Shared Ownership can be a challenging process” 

When buying a home with Shared Ownership or on the open market the process is very similar – the main difference is that once you have chosen a property and would like to proceed you have to complete an affordability qualification to be accepted to use the scheme, once this is done the rest is pretty much the same! 

However you choose to go about buying your first home it can often be an overwhelming process, but the good thing about buying with St. Arthur Homes is we are here to support you every step of the way – and are always on hand to offer advice and support when you need it. Here you can read more about our recent Shared Ownership buyers who have purchased a property with St. Arthur Homes.

Myth 10: Are Shared ownership homes difficult to sell? 

Selling any home can be complicated, and there are certain procedures to follow when selling a shared ownership home as opposed to a fully owned property. However, working with the housing association can assist with the process, and as shared ownership homes are in demand, it is likely to be a popular option for many first-time buyer for years to come.

Have you heard any other rumours about shared ownership? We’d love to hear them and let you know if they’re true, or false and where you stand with them! Get in touch with us on social media @wearestarthur.

For more information about St. Arthur Homes and the current homes available to buy with Shared Ownership, please visit www.starthurhomes.com or call 020 3745 4470.