Everything you need to know about Shared ownership from Home Reach
Shared Ownership eligibility
As with any long-term financial commitment, Home Reach requires you to meet various eligibility criteria.
We want to make this process as transparent and simple as possible, so read on for the key criteria to see if you’re eligible to buy a Home Reach home in England or Wales.
The first thing to consider is your income. To be eligible, your household income cannot exceed £80,000.
This is adjusted to £90,000 in London, taking into consideration the higher cost of living and average house prices in the capital’s property market.
Secondly, you must be either a verified first-time buyer, or if you used to own a home but don’t anymore and then you must be in the position that you can’t currently afford to buy outright again.
Home Reach properties prove especially popular with armed forces personnel. With the Forces Help to Buy scheme, servicemen and servicewomen can apply to borrow up to 50 per cent of their salary (up to a maximum of £25,000) to help buy their first home.
Only military personnel are given priority over other buyers in government-funded shared ownership schemes. Different rules may apply to programmes run by individual councils, with priority groups established and based on local housing needs, which can include at-risk individuals and disabled people.
To verify your financial circumstances as part of the eligibility criteria, an independent financial assessment will verify your capacity to pay the monthly costs you’ll need to maintain residence in your property.
An independent financial assessment is carried out by an appropriate financial expert (known as an IFA, independent Financial Advisor or IMA, independent Mortgage Advisor). This enables you to take out a mortgage and demonstrate your ability to pay the monthly costs that allow you to purchase your share in the property.
To work out what share of a property you can afford, your independent mortgage advisor will help you use Homes England’s eligibility and affordability assessment calculator. This takes into account all your financial earnings and outgoings in order to determine what you can afford.
When you have completed the assessment, your advisor will inform you of the share you are able to buy, including the level of deposit you can afford. They will also determine what will qualify as sustainable monthly rent payments for your budget, ensuring you can keep up with monthly repayments today and for the foreseeable future.
Registered and approved
To move forward with the purchase of a Home Reach property, you must be registered and approved by ourselves by completed the heylo Shared Ownership Eligibility form. This is shared once you have initially reserved a property on site.
Buyers must have a good credit history, with no bad debts or county Court judgements to their name. They also need to demonstrate that they will be able to afford the regular payments and costs involved when living in a Home Reach rent property.
Once you are approved by ourselves, you will be notified. As soon as we have marked you as eligible, we will issue the authority to proceed to the housebuilder.
Simply registering your interest for a property on the Home Reach website is not sufficient. To purchase a share in a property, you must register and have received approval from heylo.
Finally, the property you are buying will be your principle and only home.
Your Home Reach agent will be able to provide you with more information if you have any questions at all about your eligibility.