HomeBuy hope for Generation Rent
HOMEBUY shared ownership offers an affordable way up for
Generation Rent − people who, according to a national newspaper
report, are blocked from taking their first step on to the property
The message of hope comes from Bev Hall, Sales and Marketing
Director at Bromford Homes, in response to yesterday's
Observer story highlighting the plight of this "army of
renters" and asking what can be done to help them.
The number of households renting in the private sector has more
than doubled since the 1990s, says the
report, because of a tight squeeze on mortgage lending and
incomes. Most renters would like to buy but are "locked out"
because they can't afford to save the tens of thousands of pounds
needed for a deposit.
"Generation Rent is a real issue and The Observer has
done a timely job of explaining why many people who would once have
been able to buy a home are now renting in the private sector and
feel they are trapped there," says Bev.
"This reflects what homebuyers have been telling us for a few
years and the answer, for many hundreds of them, has been HomeBuy shared ownership.
"This is an affordable alternative to buying a home outright and
makes home ownership possible for the many first-time buyers −
especially those who can't tap into the Bank of Mum and Dad."
Bev points to a series of Bromford Homes case studies, where
HomeBuy's part buy-part rent deal has made the property ownership
dream come true for people who were previously renting in the
"Renting in the private sector can make sense for certain
reasons," says Bev, "but people tell us time and time again that
they prefer to own their home and that the sense of security that
comes with it is really important.
"The Observer report is spot-on here. As things stand,
private landlords can raise the rent at any time and evict people
with just two months notice. This means huge upheaval for families
− especially those with children − and, of course, it could happen
Bev cites the Osborn family's experience as a
typical shared ownership success story. Mum Sharon and dad Richard,
pictured above, struggled to find a home they could afford. Then
they found out about shared ownership and bought a 55 per cent
share of their new Bromford home at East Park, Wolverhampton.
"It was like all our Christmases coming at once," says
"We were living in private rented accommodation, not far away in
Willenhall, and decided that we really wanted the security of
owning our own home. The big thing was the size of the deposit.
Like a lot of people these days, we struggle to save and the
lenders don't offer 100 per cent mortgages like they used to.
"With shared ownership − and we ended up buying a 55 per cent
share − we only had to find around £3,500 in deposit. If we were
buying outright, the deposit would have been twice as much and we
would have been really stretching on the mortgage payments.
"We've ended up getting a better home than we dreamed of and
we've got it for around half the price. Plus our monthly rent, of
course. It's a great way of getting on to the property ladder."
Sharon and Richard both say they would recommend shared
ownership to other would-be buyers who feel trapped in the rented
sector. So would cousins Jo Doody and
Ellie Buttery, pictured below, who've bought Bromford shared
ownership homes with their partners in the same street at The
Farthings, Ketley, Telford.
Both couples were living in rented homes before and wanted to
realise their property-owning dreams but struggled with the high
deposits and home loans needed for traditional outright purchase.
They found the ideal solution with shared ownership, which means
buying between 25% and 75% of a new home and paying low rent on the
"Shared ownership was the only way we were able to get on the
property ladder," says sales and marketing co-ordinator Jo. "I
would recommend it − and Bromford − every time to anyone who, like
us, struggles to become a first-time buyer."
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10 December 2012