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i.e. New Cross, London, PO19 or Kent

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Buying FAQs

What is Shared Ownership?

Shared Ownership is a Government-funded scheme that helps people who would not normally be able to afford home ownership to purchase a home of their own.

The Shared Ownership scheme is also know as part buy, part rent because purchasers buy a share in their home and pay rent on the remainder.

Shared owners do not share their homes with someone else, they share the ownership of it with a housing association.

Who is eligible to buy a home through the Shared Ownership scheme?

The scheme is designed to help people who cannot afford to buy the type of home that they need or want on the open market.

In most instances, existing council and housing association tenants and people registered for housing with their local authority are given priority, but other people can also benefit from shared ownership.

Most shared owners are first time buyers; others are people who have had to leave their existing owner-occupied home because of a relationship breakdown. To be considered you must be able to afford the cost of the shared ownership rent and mortgage and any service charges.

To be eligible for shared ownership you must be a British or EU citizen, or have ‘indefinite leave to remain' stamped in your passport, or have appropriate documentation to cover the eligibility of your application.

If you do not have indefinite leave to remain in the UK but can provide evidence of mortgagability from a prime lender, we may be able to help you.

We will be unable to help you if you have had any arrears of rent in the last six months, or are already named on an existing mortgage or property deeds. Applicants receiving Housing Benefit will need to be assessed on a case by case basis before a decision can be made.

How do I register with Hyde New Homes?

You can contact us online, by email or by telephone to register, or make an enquiry using the 'contact us' page on this website.

We will normally be able to accept your application to purchase a Shared Ownership property if you fulfill the following criteria:

Your income

We believe it's important not to encourage people to take on Shared Ownership if they cannot realistically afford it. For this reason, we have set minimum income levels for as a guide for applicants as shown below:

  • Single Applicants   £18,000 per annum
  • Joint Applicants     £23,000 per annum

If you are able to put a large cash sum towards a purchase you may qualify with a lower income. Please remember that these figures are a guide to the minimum income levels required to apply to purchase through the Shared Ownership scheme. For most of the new properties that we develop, buyers will need incomes in excess of the minimum levels stated above.

Your savings

If you want to purchase a Shared Ownership home you will need savings. This money will be required to cover legal fees, other professional fees and any stamp duty.

The minimum amount required is between £3,000 - £4,000.
Again, this is a minimum figure. If you were to buy a new property in a high-value area, you would be likely to require access to
additional savings.

You will also need to be registered with your local HomeBuy Agent.Information on how to apply can be found at www.homebuy.co.uk

How does the Shared Ownership scheme work?

The size of the share you buy can be between 25% and 75% of the value of the property, although this does depend on individual circumstances. Normally we sell between 40% - 50% shares, although smaller or larger shares may be available on some new developments.

Shared owners pay a monthly rent on the share that has not been purchased. There will usually also be a monthly service charge
to cover items such as buildings insurance, management and cleaning and maintenance of communal areas.

Do I need to live or work locally to qualify for a shared ownership home? And if so, what is the definition of a local connection – does it mean living/working in the same borough?

Besides the general eligibility  criteria, additional criteria are often specified by the various Local Authorities, therefore, we recommend you check the property listing for the criteria of the scheme you are interested in.  A local area connection means you live or/and work in the borough, or you may have relatives who live there.

Can I choose the size of the share I buy, or is this decided by the housing association?

The minimum share of the equity you can purchase is determined by the Housing Association and you will be required to pay a subsidized monthly rent on the unsold share of the equity to the Housing Association. However, you may choose to purchase additional shares if that is affordable to you. You may also choose to staircase (buy more shares), as that option becomes affordable to you at a later stage. We have a team of inhouse specialist who are able to advise and assist you with this.

Can a shared owner buy a bigger home than is actually needed – for example a three-bed flat for a single person?

There is no bedroom size restriction and you can apply for any size of property.

Can I get a lodger?

Yes, you can take in a paying guest or lodger, as long as you are still living in the property and do not sign a tenancy agreement. It would make good financial sense, however, to verify through an Independent Financial Advisor IFA that the costs of home ownership are affordable to you prior to purchase. I would also advise you to double check the lease with the HA you are dealing with beforehand.

I’m thinking of going travelling for 6 months – can I sublet my home while I’m away?

No, you may not sublet unless you are given permission by the Housing Association in question for special circumstances. Shared ownership is a product that benefits from government funds to make homes affordable for those unable to buy on the open market, therefore, it is not permitted to make commercial gain from it. Additionally, if you have a mortgage, your lender may also not be in accordance with your letting it to someone else.

Can I list my home on Airbnb to rent it out for short periods?

No, you may not rent the property out.

I’m an existing shared owner - can my partner move in with me?

Yes, that is fine.

Do leases of shared ownership homes vary in length?

Housing Associations may offer leases of varying lengths, therefore, it is always best to enquire of your sales consultant what the terms of the lease are.

How do I go about extending my lease?

Shared Owners do not have a Statutory right to extend their lease.  However, Hyde will grant its Shared Owners a Voluntary lease extension.  To be eligible the following must apply:

  • There must be an initial lease term of over 21 years on the lease.
  • No existing breaches of the lease
  • All conditions under the headlease can be met (eg where Hyde are not the Freeholder).

Is there an age restriction on eligibility?

No there is no age restriction on eligibility.  However, if you require a mortgage you will need to be over 18 years old and mortgage lenders will assess your age in respect of the amount of mortgage years you have available to you.  The older you are, the mortgage company may require a higher deposit.

Is stamp duty payable on the full market value of the property, or only on the share purchased?

When you buy a share in a property through an approved Shared Ownership scheme you may have to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax. You can find more information of Stamp Duty for Shared Ownership properties on the HM Revenue and Customs website at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/sdlt-shared-ownership-property

Am I free to carry out home improvements such as knocking down an internal wall to create an open plan kitchen/living area? - Home improvements are welcomed, however, the plans would still have to be approved by the freeholder.

In Hyde’s case, there is an internal approval process to ensure they are feasible and will not weaken the structure of the building , for example.

How would I go about selling a shared ownership home?

Hyde offers a very competent service for the resale of a shared ownership home. Please contact our resales advisors on 0345 606 1221 for more tailored information.

Is the process for buying a resale apartment the same as when buying one that’s brand new?

The criteria and sales process is the same as buying a newbuild property.  However, you are buying the property from the existing shared owner rather than Hyde.

How are maintenance and repair costs apportioned in a development that includes privately owned and social housing?

This is determined by the Service Charge team at Hyde. They work in conjunction with the Project Manager for the development to determine which materials have been used, their probable longevity, building insurance costs  and also which facilities are available, such as lift, communal gardens etc, as well as what the cost of maintaining them would be. A sinking fund is also factored in for future replacements.