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£250 reward for happy Bromford homebuyer

HOMEBUYER Jo Doody was so pleased with her new Bromford house that she encouraged her cousin to take a look at The Farthings development in Ketley, Telford.

Cousin Ellie Buttery was equally impressed − and decided to buy a Bromford home in the same street with postie partner Jim.

As a result, 29-year-old sales and marketing co-ordinator Jo picked up a £250 Recommend A Friend reward from Bromford Homes −and spent most of it on a nice relaxing spa weekend.

"Recommend A Friend is a really great idea," says Jo, who bought her three-bedroom house at The Farthings with partner Darren Hack through Bromford's HomeBuy shared ownership scheme.

"We're really happy with the quality of the build and how helpful the Bromford team have been all the way through the homebuying process, so I was really keen to recommend Bromford to Ellie.

"I told her and Jim that they should have a look at The Farthings because they're such nice houses − and they loved it straight away. Now they're living in the same street!"

Ellie picks up the story, saying: "We didn't waste much time after seeing Joanne's home! We thought it was really spacious and finished to a great standard. The value for money is fantastic."

Farthings Friend

Both couples were living in rented homes before and wanted to get a foot on the property ladder 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 remaining share.

"Shared ownership was the only way we were able to get on the property ladder," says Jo. "I would recommend it − and Bromford − every time to anyone who, like us, struggles to become a first-time buyer."

Ellie agrees. "Saving enough money for a deposit was especially difficult. It would have taken us years to raise enough," says the 26-year-old library assistant, who's on maternity leave with ten-month-old daughter Ivy.

"Shared ownership means we had to come up with a much smaller deposit, have a more affordable mortgage and live in lovely new three-bed home we can call our own. We also like the prospect of being able to staircase − increase the share that we own − as time goes by."

Win-win incentive

Recommend A Friend is a win-win incentive for happy homebuyers and for Bromford Homes, according to Sales and Marketing Director Bev Hall.

"We're delighted that Jo and Ellie are so pleased with their Bromford Homes − and with shared ownership − and we know that word-of-mouth recommendation can be one of our most powerful marketing tools," says Bev.

"Recommend A Friend is our way of saying thank you in a tangible way to customers like Jo with a family member or friend who could also benefit, like them, from owning a Bromford home.

"It's really easy. The customer simply sends us the details of their family member or friend and if that person goes ahead and buys one of our great homes we send them £250."

Home ownership dream

The couples' enthusiasm for shared ownership doesn't surprise Bev, who points to The Farthings as a prime example of HomeBuy's success − it's possible to get on the property ladder here for as little as £29,375* and a deposit could be just under £1,500.

"With house prices strong and mortgage lending much tighter than it used to be, renting can seem like the only option for many first-time buyers and affording a home of your own seem like an impossible dream," says Bev.

"The good news is the dream can come true thanks to shared ownership − and we've clearly got some great examples here at The Farthings.

"It's a great way for people to get into the home-buying market and need not cost more each month than renting from a private landlord."

* This example is based on a property price of £117,500. A 25 per cent share would cost £29,375 and a five per cent deposit on that would be £1,469.

05 November 2012