Part-buy offers hope for out-priced rural buyers
A NEW property survey has highlighted the plight of first-time
buyers in the Cotswold area by naming it the least affordable rural
district in Britain.
Buying a typical home here on the open market can cost more than
nine times − or £318,128 − the local gross annual average
earnings of £33,721, says the Halifax research.
The findings are highlighted by Bromford Homes Sales and
Marketing Director Bev Hall because, she says, they reinforce the
need for more shared ownership homes in the Cotswold
and other rural areas.
"The Halifax figures may shock some people but probably won't
come as a surprise to first-time buyers in Cotswold district and
other sought-after rural places where property prices are high and
average wages relatively low," says Bev.
"These are mostly younger people with strong local roots and it
can seem like the only option is to stay with the family or become
part of Generation Rent, with little or no hope of buying a home as
they watch property prices and private rents get higher and
"For them, shared ownership probably represents the only
affordable way of getting onto the property ladder unless −
like some fortunate first-time buyers − they are able to tap
into what's become known as the Bank of Mum and Dad."
With shared ownership, you buy between 25% and 75% of your new
home and pay low rent on the remaining share. So, for example, at
Cirencester's popular Fortuna (pictured above) development − in
the heart of Cotswold district − you can get onto the property
ladder for as little as £31,250* and pay as little as £1,563* in
deposit, based on a 95% mortgage.
"That deposit is much less than you would have to pay if buying
on the open market − or if you buy through the new Help to Buy
mortgage scheme," says Bev. "That's true even if you end up buying
a more typical shared ownership share of 40%. That would cost you
£50,000 using the same example at Fortuna and a minimum 5% deposit
would be just £2,500."
Compare that, says Bev, with a similar apartment selling for an
open market price of £125,000. A minimum 5% deposit would be £6,250
− two and a half times as much as our average part-buy
"These figures − and especially the low deposits − go a long way
towards explaining why so many people on lower incomes are saying
YES to shared ownership − especially in rural areas like
Cirencester. In fact, we've sold more than 90 part-buy homes here
at Fortuna and are down to our last few apartments," says Bev, who
also points to other rural shared ownership success stories such as
Middleton Chase in Middleton Cheney,
"It's also been proven that your typical total monthly
housing costs are cheaper with shared ownership than if renting
from a private landlord or buying outright. That's true even when
you add in the low rent that's charged on the share you don't buy
as well as other regular housing costs," Bev (pictured below) tells
"At the end of the day, you get a new feature-packed,
energy-efficient home that you can call your own. You can decorate
it the way you like and enjoy the peace of mind that comes with
knowing that it's so much more secure than rented housing."
According to the Halifax survey, rural house prices are on average
13% more expensive than in urban areas. Home buyers in rural areas
will pay £206,423 for a property, compared to £182,710 in a town or
In the West Midlands, for example, an open market home will cost
£251,996 in a rural area, while a similar home would cost £145,801
in an urban area − a 59% price difference.
The research also concludes that while first-time buyers account
for more than half − 52% − of house purchases in urban
areas, they account for just 40% in the countryside.
To find out more about shared ownership, give Bromford Homes
a call now on 0845 60 10878 or register your interest online. You
can also keep in touch by following us on Twitter or Facebook.
Go here to find out more about the Halifax survey
and how they worked out their figures.
* £31,250 would buy a 25% share of a one-bed apartment at
Fortuna and a deposit could be as little as £1,563 with a 95%
mortgage on that minimum share. The actual amount you buy reflects
what you can afford.
22 October 2013