Guide to buying a
shared ownership home 

The first step on the ladder…

1. Complete a Financial Affordability Assessment

Whether you are buying an existing shared ownership property or looking to reserve a new build shared ownership home, you will need to complete an affordability assessment.

An Independent Financial Advisor (from our panel) will carry out an affordability assessment to determine the maximum percentage share you will be able to purchase in your new home, based on your income and monthly outgoings. If you are buying an existing share of a shared ownership home, they will assess whether you qualify.

They will also be able to advise on a mortgage product that suits your needs and help you secure a mortgage in principle.

2. Choosing your new Home

Once the Financial Advisor has calculated how much you can afford, you can find the home you wish to buy – this might be a property on a new build development or a preowned property.  

Your share will be based upon the current open market value of the property you wish to purchase.  You can purchase shares ranging from as little as a 10% share to a maximum of a 75% initial share, depending on what you can afford. Please note that local conditions may restrict the maximum share you can buy.

3. Reserving your new Home

If you have chosen a property on a new development, you will need to pay the reservation fee to secure your home and take it off the market.  The reservation fee will be deducted from the purchase price of your home when you complete.  

You will be asked to confirm the name of the solicitor who will act on your behalf. You will be responsible for the appointment and payment of your solicitor (it is worth ensuring that your appointed solicitor is experienced in shared ownership sales as this will help the sale progress as smoothly and quickly as possible). See our recommended list of solicitors.

Memorandum of Sale

On receiving the reservation or offer paperwork, a Memorandum of Sale (MOS) will be issued, summarising the agreed details of the home purchase and sent to you, your solicitor, and to your landlord’s solicitors.

Shared Ownership Lease

On receiving the Memorandum of Sale your prospective Landlord’s solicitor will issue the shared ownership lease and title information to your appointed solicitor to progress the conveyancing process. Your solicitor will explain your rights and responsibilities as a shared ownership leaseholder.

4. Securing a Full Mortgage Offer

Once you have reserved your home, you will need to submit your full mortgage application to your chosen lender. Your IFA may be able to help with your application. Your lender will usually take around 2 weeks to consider your application.

5. Exchange of Contracts

Approximately 4 weeks after reservation and subject to your solicitor having completed the conveyancing process and the legal and mortgage arrangements being in place, contracts will be exchanged. You will be expected to pay the deposit on exchange of contracts.

6. Completion

On completion day, your solicitor will request the release of funds from your mortgage lender to pay for your home and you will also have paid any additional funds you are putting towards the purchase of your home to your solicitor. The reservation fee will be deducted from the monies due and recorded on the completion statement. On completion, the sales team or estate agent will handover the keys to your new home.