"This is something for me"
Shared ownership is an affordable way to buy a home of your own. NCHA's customers have written about their experiences in a series of case studies, to explain what shared ownership has done for them.
Many people find it hard to get on the housing ladder. The large deposits mean it is beyond some people’s budgets. Katy in Farnsfield, Nottinghamshire, had the deposit, but living under the shadow of former debt made her think that home ownership was not an option for her.
“I never thought I’d be able to afford to buy. It’s so hard to get a deposit together, to earn money, pay for everything and save at the same time.
“Then I was unexpectedly left money when my Gran passed away. Suddenly I had what I needed for a deposit - this was my opportunity to get on the housing ladder. It was now or never.
“I did doubt myself a few times. I’m 41, I thought, do I want to be doing this now? I was really nervous, I felt guilty about using my Gran’s money; but then I worked out I’d paid over £50,000 to my old landlord and that helped me make up my mind!
“Now I pay half rent and half mortgage and hopefully one day in the future I’ll be able to increase the amount I own.
“The process was a little trickier for me. Years ago, I’d got myself into debt and labelled with a bad credit rating and I did find it harder to buy this house. I was turned down for my first two mortgage applications, but my mortgage adviser was brilliant: he really fought for me and I was accepted on the third try!
“When I decided to buy, this development was the first thing I saw on Right Move. I had heard of shared ownership before, but I never thought of it as something for me. I thought they wouldn’t accept me because of my previous debt, but I applied for it and I got it!
“I’ve always lived in old houses and I didn’t think I liked new builds, but I’ve been converted! It’s so warm and clean; I’ve saved on utility bills already.
“I love the house, I love the location. This is me now - I’m not going anywhere!
“It’s so quiet, I even struggled to sleep the first couple of nights, but I love it now. One night I could hear a ‘boom boom’ and I was a bit scared, then I realised it was the sound of horses’ hooves outside! I have a field right outside my house and can see the horses from the living room window. It’s green belt land opposite, so this view will always be mine.
“This is something for me!
“Shared ownership is such a great opportunity for people to get on the housing ladder. The biggest mistake I made was not buying a house at a young age. I tell all my staff to buy now - don’t rent; look into shared ownership.
“I think there’s a stigma against housing associations and that puts some people off shared ownership, but if it wasn’t for NCHA I never could have bought this house.
“My advice to people would be to look into it, educate yourself, pick up the phone ask the questions, and don’t buy into the stigma: housing associations are there to help everyone.”