Shared Ownership Solicitors
If you don’t have enough money saved up or coming in for a full deposit and mortgage, shared ownership is a flexible way to build up equity in a property which you co-own with the housing provider.
Shared ownership lets you buy part of your house from a social landlord or housing association and then pay rent on the rest. This can be a great opportunity for anyone looking to get on the housing ladder, but you need to be very clear on the terms of the shared ownership as there are potential pitfalls and ongoing costs to consider.
An important point to bear in mind is that shared ownership properties are always leasehold rather than freehold. Your solicitor will be able to advise you on the implications of this and perform the necessary checks to ensure the terms of the leasehold won’t cause you problems in future.
Our expert property solicitors in Bristol have plenty of experience in dealing with shared ownership transactions, as well as related areas such as leasehold properties and Help to Buy. We can help with buying and selling shared ownership properties, as well as remortgaging and increasing your share of ownership (known as ‘staircasing’).
Our charges are transparent, and we quote for all fees and disbursements up front, meaning that you’ll understand the full extent of your conveyancing charges from the very start.
Speak to our shared ownership solicitors in Bristol
Want to see how much shared ownership conveyancing might cost? Use our free conveyancing quote request form.
Our shared ownership conveyancing expertise
Our expert conveyancing solicitors in Bristol can help with all matters related to shared ownership property including:
Buying a shared ownership property
We offer a safe, reliable conveyancing service for buying shared ownership property. Our team can assist with understanding eligibility criteria, reviewing shared ownership lease agreements, carrying out conveyancing checks and all of the other legal details involved in buying a shared ownership property.
Increasing your ownership share (‘staircasing’)
Should you wish to purchase an additional share in the property, we can help you understand your right to do so and any conditions that need to be met, as well as assisting with the legal documents involved and refinancing where required.
Remortgaging a shared ownership property
If you need to remortgage, we can guide you through the whole process, helping you to get a new mortgage that matches your needs. Whether you need to raise additional funds or simply wish to cut your monthly repayments, we can make the process as straightforward and stress-free as possible.
Selling shared ownership property
When the time comes to sell up and move on, we can make sure you are clear about the process involved, including the housing providers right to find a buyer and whether you are entitled to advertise the property on the open market.
Disputes over shared ownership property
Where there is a dispute over a shared ownership property, our Civil Litigation team can work with you to find an amicable solution wherever possible. In most cases, shared ownership disputes can be resolved without court proceedings, saving you time and money.
Our shared ownership conveyancing fees
We offer fixed fee conveyancing with costs ranging from £625 + VAT to £2,425 + VAT depending on the type of property, the type of transaction and the property value.
For a more detailed breakdown of our fixed fee conveyancing prices, please take a look at our conveyancing pricing information.
We provide transparent upfront quotes for all of our conveyancing services, meaning you will know exactly how much your conveyancing will cost from the outset.
Your quote will include a breakdown of our fees and all payments to third parties (known as ‘disbursements’) for the checks and searches carried out during the conveyancing process.
To find out how much your conveyancing might cost, please fill out our short form for a free conveyancing quote.
Shared ownership FAQs
With shared ownership, rather than buying a property outright, you buy a share in a property with the remainder being owned by a social landlord or housing association. You will then pay rent on the share you do not own. The rent is less than the rate charged on the open market and usually charged at 2.75% of the property value per year.
Your deposit can be 5% of the price of the share, not of the whole property. You can buy an initial stake in a shared ownership home between 25% and 75% of its value, with the option to buy a larger share later – known as ‘staircasing’. If you reach 75% ownership, then you will not normally need to pay rent on the remaining 25%.
Most people pay for their share by taking out a shared ownership mortgage, but you can also use savings to purchase equity.
To be eligible for shared ownership, you must:
- Have household income less than £80,000 (or less than £90,000 in London)
- Not currently own a property, although you are allowed to have owned one in the past
- Not be able to buy a home suitable for your needs on the open market
- Not be in mortgage or rent arrears
- Have a good credit history
- Be able to afford the rent and other costs involved in taking on the property in question
Specific housing associations and social landlords may also have their own additional eligibility requirements that you will need to meet.
This will depend on the rules set by the relevant housing provider, but 5-10% of value of the share you wish to purchase is common.
Yes. While not all mortgage providers will be willing to lend on a shared ownership property, many will, including most of the major UK lenders.
As with any mortgage, you will have to pass strict affordability check to show you can afford the cost of owning the property, which will take into account the rent on the percentage of the property you don’t own.
This will depend on the circumstances, but typical costs when buying a shared ownership property include:
- The purchase price
- Stamp duty (depending the value of the property)
- Conveyancing fees
- Mortgage fees
- Moving costs
Ongoing costs for owning a shared ownership property will normally include:
- Mortgage repayments
- Rent on the share of the property you don’t own
- Service changes
- Repair and maintenance costs
The rent will be set by the housing provider and will be based on:
- The value of the property when you buy it
- What percentage of the property the housing provider owns
A typical rent for a shared ownership property is around 3% of the housing provider’s share of the property’s value.
This will depend on the terms of the agreement you sign with the housing provider, but commonly you will be expected to cover some or all of costs involved in making an necessary repairs to the property during your ownership.
It is important to be clear about your responsibilities before signing a shared ownership lease agreement as you could potentially be liable for substantial costs in future if the property were ever to need significant repairs.
Depending on the value of the property, you may have to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT). The amount of stamp duty you have to pay will be based on the total value of the property rather than the value of the percentage you are buying. On the plus side, you will not need to pay any additional SDLT when increasing the percentage you own in future.
This will depend on the rules set by the housing provider when you first purchased the property. If you wish to sell your share of a shared ownership property, you will usually need to allow the housing provider to attempt to find a buyer first.
There will typically be a time limit for the housing provider to find a buyer (often around 8 weeks) after which you will be able to advertise the property for sale on the open market.
If you own 100% of the property, you will generally be able to advertise on the open market through an estate agent.
Why choose Barcan+Kirby for shared ownership conveyancing?
We work with clients in Bristol and nationwide, providing safe, reliable conveyancing for shared ownership properties and all other types of residential property.
Our goal is to offer a convenient, competitively priced conveyancing service that helps you achieve your goals as swiftly and smoothly as possible, keeping the whole process less stressful for you.
When you work with our conveyancing team, you will have an experienced legal expert handling your case from start to finish. They will be available by phone and email whenever you need an update or to ask a question, so your conveyancing can fit around your schedule and you will never be left wondering what is going on with your transaction.
We are accredited by the Law Society’s Conveyancing Quality Scheme (CQS) for the high standard of our residential property services. We have also been awarded the Law Society’s Lexcel accreditation for quality of our services across the whole firm.