Getting onto the property ladder in the current climate may seem intimidating and costly, especially with skyrocketing energy bills. But, there has been a push by stakeholders in Leeds to produce solutions in the city. Shared Ownership is a viable option for many first-time buyers as it can help reduce the financial burden of a traditional mortgage.
Leeds Building Society has examined Shared Ownership as a way of helping people to get onto the property ladder and found that many respondents felt it would allow them to access their dream homes.
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Why Is Shared Ownership Important In Leeds?
According to the Leeds.Gov website, 21.55% of Leeds’ 812,000 people are estimated to live in relative poverty, 42.29% of whom are currently within working age.
There are 54,000 council-owned properties in Leeds, though this continues to dwindle as people buy them under the right-to-buy scheme. Many of these houses are pre-1919 back-to-back dwellings, severely energy inefficient and don’t offer the convenient amenities that many modern homes provide.
Leeds has a massive issue with a large amount of older housing in poorer neighbourhoods needing to be more energy efficient, and there has been a recent push to provide the city with newer, sustainable housing.
Although this has been a challenge for many developers, the city is realising the struggle of its inhabitants. In the last five years, more planning permissions have been granted than at any other time in history, which has delivered over 16,200 homes.
The Leeds City Council has discovered that delivering affordable housing is the key to Leeds’ success as the second-largest local authority area in terms of population. There are many stakeholders; registered providers, private developers and the council currently involved in producing a direct delivery of homes in Leeds.
Currently, the city council is still investing in the city’s housing stock to ensure they meet the decency standards which contribute to the city’s zero carbon ambition through energy efficient developments, which in turn also reduces energy bills for tenants.
What Actually Is Shared Ownership?
Another way private developers, registered providers and the council are helping its tenants climb the property ladder is by pushing shared ownership schemes throughout Leeds.
They allow people to buy a share of a property, pay a subsidised rent on the remaining share, and take out a shared ownership mortgage to buy their share. As a result, anyone with a lower income or who can’t afford to save enough for a deposit can still get onto the property ladder.
In addition, the portion of the home that is owned will grow in value if the property valuation increases.
Currently, there are Shared Ownership schemes in Leeds, which make it easier for eligible purchasers to climb the property ladder. The share available for purchase can range anywhere from 25% to 75%, and you can even buy a 10% share on some homes. The remaining percentage is then made payable to a landlord, usually part of a housing association.
It is an affordable way to become a homeowner in Leeds because your mortgage and deposit are less than if you bought the property outright. It also allows people to buy a larger share of the property later, reducing their rent payments.
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What Shared Ownership Schemes Are Already In Play In Leeds?
Shared Ownership is promoted as the low-cost, low-deposit path for first-time buyers to escape the rent trap, and it is an excellent way for people in Leeds to get on the housing ladder sooner.
To explain further, Amy Gooder, Yorkshire Regional Sales Manager at Guinness Homes, shares her excitement over a new shared ownership property development, Points Cross.
“Prospective Leeds homeowners enjoyed afternoon tea and prosecco at an event held by a national housing developer, Guinness Homes. On Saturday, 14 January, the event at Points Cross, Chadwick Street, celebrated Phase One of the shared ownership development with the launch of its state-of-the-art two-bedroom show home and marketing suite.”
“Phase One of the Points Cross development includes 58 one-bedroom apartments, 95 two-bedroom apartments, 16 three-bedroom apartments and 24 three-bedroom duplexes, which are now available for reservation.”
“With prices starting from £89,500 for a 50 per cent share in the property, shared Ownership is a more affordable alternative to traditional homeownership for prospective buyers, especially those seeking to own their first home. With the opportunity to further increase the percentage share over time, known as ‘staircasing’, owners can control what they possess based on their affordability.”
“Situated on the edge of the city centre, Points Cross is located to the west of Leeds Dock and is a ten-minute walk from Leeds Train Station.”
“Local to Leeds City College campus and Crown Point shopping centre, the development is ideally situated in the heart of a dynamic, thriving community.”
“Our recent launch was a great success, and it was rewarding to share our knowledge with prospective homeowners on what shared Ownership is all about. With many of our guests being first-time buyers, shared ownership properties are an exciting and affordable way to help young people get a foot on the property ladder.”
“In 2023, we’re looking forward to welcoming residents into Points Cross and everything else the year has in store for us at Guinness Homes.”
Summary: Shared Ownership Schemes In Leeds
Leeds is home to a great range of Shared Ownership properties, where aspirational homeowners can purchase a share of a property and rent the remainder. This can bring down the cost of a property, making it more accessible for those struggling to save for a deposit.
In addition, Shared Ownership gives tenants a chance to build up equity in their property, and with the help of their housing association, they can eventually own their property outright. With Shared Ownership, Leeds residents can enjoy the benefits of homeownership without breaking the bank.
And, with property developers like Guinness Homes building Points Cross, offering 25% to 50% Shared Ownership, Leeds has a brighter future for all prospective homeowners.
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