London Home Show Countdown: Clarion Housing

Guest Blog – Clarion Housing: Shared Ownership holds the key for locked out house hunters.

Tim Seward, Director of Sales & Marketing at Clarion.

The housing crisis is at the very top of the political agenda today, with the Prime Minister declaring recently that it is her ‘personal mission’ to fix the problem and ‘restore the dream of homeownership’.

But the first-time buyers we speak to at Clarion Housing continue to tell us that affordability remains a major barrier to getting on the housing ladder, and this is not helped by the rising cost of a deposit. According to the Halifax, the figure now stands at around £33,000 compared to more than £17,000 a decade ago. So is Shared Ownership the answer for budding buyers?

It is estimated that today there around 200,000 Shared Ownership properties in the UK. The scheme allows first time buyers to purchase a share in a home (usually between 25 per cent and 75 per cent of the home’s value) and then pay rent on the rest. Through Shared Ownership, buyers might only need a 5 per cent deposit of a 25 per cent share of a home.

The scheme is by no means new – in fact the concept has been in existence for over 30 years. Yet despite all of this, there is still a lack of understanding by the general public about what Shared Ownership is. A recent YouGov poll showed that almost half of buyers aren’t aware of the scheme’s benefits and a quarter wrongly assumed that only social housing residents were eligible.

At Clarion Housing, the UK’s largest housing association, we recognise the crucial role Shared Ownership can play in solving the housing crisis. By reducing the upfront cost associated with buying a home, we believe it is a great way of helping those who are currently locked out of the private market.

Over ten years, we are delivering 50,000 homes – a third of which will be for affordable tenures, including Shared Ownership. We already have a range of Shared Ownership homes across the country available to meet a range of buyers’ needs and aspirations.

To find out more latest developments visit our website, or visit us at stand one at the London Home Show on Saturday 3rd March.