Think shared ownership isn’t for families? Think again! Shared ownership can be a great way to get onto the property ladder, especially for families who want their own space and security. This is exactly the situation Amie Drake and Andy Spencer both 23, found themselves in. Looking for a way to afford their own home, they turned to shared ownership to help them.
Like many young couples, they found themselves in the situation where buying on the open market wasn’t going to be an option for them, due to today’s house prices…especially in Oxfordshire! They had found themselves living at Andy’s parents and couldn’t wait to find their own place once their son came along. Amie stated, “All three of us living in a double bedroom was such a squeeze so we desperately wanted to get our own space, not only for us but our little boy as well."
In a bid to find a suitable home that they could afford, the couple went to a Help to Buy show to look at what homes were available in Oxfordshire when they came across Aster’s shared ownership stand.
Amie and Andy were pleasantly surprised to find out what shared ownership is, and that you own a share of the house that you could afford to pay mortgage on and pay rent on the remaining share. Amy said “I initially thought shared ownership was a loan of some kind and that the home wasn’t actually yours. We spoke to the team at Aster who were so helpful from the get-go and explained how shared ownership works and what it could mean for us. It sounded great so we spoke to a mortgage advisor the same day and she advised it would be the best option for us."
Now the couple were happy with how shared ownership works, they could now start looking for their perfect family home. They went on to find their perfect home in Oxfordshire, which was a three-bed end terrace house with plenty of space and a garden for their little boy to play in…just what they needed! After calculating what they could realistically afford, they purchased a 60% share for £171,000 with a deposit of just £20,000.
Speaking about their positive experience dealing with the Aster team, Amie and Andy said “The Aster sales team have been fantastic and have guided us through every stage of the process. For us, the way the rent and the mortgage split is much more manageable, and the same with the cheaper deposit. Without it we wouldn’t have been able to get a home for our little boy. The fact he now has his own room makes me so happy and it’s had such a positive impact on him as well. He’s able to play in his own garden and is sleeping much better.”
It's no surprise that many young couples and families are turning to shared ownership to help them get onto the property ladder. Amy Nettleton, Assistant Development Director of sales and marketing for Aster Group, commented: “The biggest challenge facing first-time buyers is saving for a deposit. The average house price in the UK currently stands at £218,000 and setting aside cash for a £20,000 deposit is proving difficult for the millions of people facing high costs in the private rented sector. Shared ownership provides an alternative solution. It offers flexibility and security and is an increasingly important housing choice as the affordability challenge extends across the country.”
Now Amie and Andy are settled and happy, they plan to grow their family in their new home when they are ready and eventually want to staircase to own 100% of the property.
A breakdown of Amie and Andy's costs:
They bought a 60% share at £171,000
Monthly rent: £261.25
Monthly mortgage repayments: £679
Monthly Service Charge: £13.96
Customer Deposit: £20,000
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