Emma Mulcrow wasn’t even considering buying a new home, thinking the chances of home ownership in the South East were impossible, till she discovered the new homes at Cross Street that is.
Emma felt her only choice was to rent, or to never leave her family home: “At first I saw a flat to rent and thought I’d like this one, but the money hardly covered the deposit, first month, admin fees”.
At over £360,000, the average home in the region now costs almost 12 times the average salary*.
But the new homes at Cross Street in Chatham caught Emma’s eye and when she discovered shared ownership, she simply couldn’t refuse.
“I had some money in a Help to Buy ISA but hadn’t given much thought about future plans as thought I’d be saving for years.
“After researching the shared ownership scheme, I realised what I could afford and how quickly it could all be sorted too.”
Shared ownership is a great way to get your first foot on the property ladder. It’s a chance to part-buy a home of your own.
If you can’t afford to buy in one go, shared ownership lets you buy a share of your home and pay rent on the rest.
And that’s exactly what 29-year-old Emma did.
Emma discovered shared ownership; an offer she couldn’t turn down
She’s purchased 35% of her two-bedroom apartment, which has a large, fully-integrated kitchen, lounge-diner, modern bathroom and balcony area.
Her deposit was just over £3,500, which is a lot less than she thinks she’d be paying if she’d chosen a different option.
“I’m over the moon about this home. I have a plan to overpay on the mortgage where possible, if I can overpay then I will so that hopefully once the fix is up I’ll be in a better position and potentially purchase more shares.
“Shared ownership is a fantastic starting point”.
Inside one of the shared ownership homes at Cross Street
Cross Street is the final phase of our exciting three-part development at the Brook which completed in May 2018.
It offers 50 homes; 20 affordable rent, 11 market rent and 19 shared ownership homes, which were available through our sales agent Red Loft.
The development was shortlisted last year for an Inside Housing Development Award as Best Regeneration Project outside London.
The two-bedroom homes cost in the region of £165,000, which Emma knew was a great price: “I knew the price couldn’t be missed, I just couldn’t turn it down”.
That was exactly how Shane Deville felt too
Shane was living at home with his parents, saving towards a mortgage for a few years and struggling to find a home that was affordable enough.
“I’d previously heard good things about shared ownership schemes and when I saw the Cross Street development advertised online, immediately registered my interest.
“I was very impressed with what I saw and jumped at the opportunity”.
31-year-old Shane was handed the keys to his one-bedroom flat in May 2018: “I was very happy when I walked through the front door for the first time and saw the finished property”.
Shane, who works in customer services now lives in a flat in Hawke House, which boasts a high-spec kitchen, lots of storage space and a large outside terrace space.
One great factor about shared ownership is you have the chance to increase your share at a later stage, if you want to. This is known as stair casing, and it’s something that Shane is very keen to do.
“I feel great to own a percentage of my own home (75%) and will definitely aim to own it outright in the future”, he added.
*According to data from the 2017/18 Home Truths report from the National Housing Federation.