FIRST STEPS in Tower Hamlets
Information on shared ownership in Tower Hamlets
The Mayors FIRST STEPS programme offers a range of intermediate housing options to Londoners on low and modest incomes, which may enable you to buy with a smaller deposit or rent at a lower rate than is otherwise possible. The Mayor has partnered with property portal Share to Buy to advertise all FIRST STEPS properties in one place and www.sharetobuy.com/firststeps is the official website where you can find affordable homes to buy and rent in Tower Hamlets and across London. Use the tabs at the bottom of the screen to find more information on FIRST STEPS schemes available in Tower Hamlets, or start searching for properties by following these three simple steps:
20th September 2017
Shared Ownership Week returns for its fifth year, 21st - 27th September. Shared Ownership week raises awareness this home ownership scheme which offers a life line to thousands of first time buyers.
19th September 2017
Countdown to the London Home Show Autumn 2017: Our sponsor Crest Nicholson give you the low down on their fantastic development Dylon Works, available via Help to Buy London.
18th September 2017
Countdown to the London Home Show Autumn 2017: Hear Marco and Olga's story about buying their first home for their young family with Notting Hill Sales.
16th September 2017
Countdown to the London Home Show Autumn 2017: L&Q's Lucy Chitty dispells some of the myths about home ownership.
Rent to save in Tower Hamlets
Rent to Save is designed to enable aspiring home-owners to move into the home they have chosen, even if they have not yet been able to save a sufficient mortgage deposit.
As the rent will be at a lower than market rate, you will be able to save throughout the period of your tenancy. Using typical assumptions for rental levels and mortgage deposits for shared ownership, a household regularly saving just the difference between their rent and market rent would have a sufficient deposit in less than two and a half years.
The housing provider will discuss with you your savings goal from the outset of the tenancy and how you should work towards this. The housing provider will explain to you how they will review your savings goal on an ongoing basis to ensure you are on course to achieve it.
The key features of the product are:
- Let at up to 80% of the equivalent market rent for that property, with a fixed rate of inflation.
- The property would be let on an assured shorthold tenancy for a fixed term, up to five years, linked to (but not necessarily the same as) the required savings period. The period can be extended if you still want to buy but need a bit more time.
- The tenancy can be ended, subject to the terms of your tenancy agreement and initial fixed terms being spent, at any point.
- A savings plan will be put in place to help you raise a sufficient deposit to purchase on either shared ownership or equity loan terms within five years.
- The housing provider will discuss with you their regular reviews to check your progress in saving for a deposit.
- You can purchase on shared ownership or equity loan terms at any point in the tenancy, subject to still being eligible (see the ‘Am I eligible?’ page)
Availability of Rent to Save properties is currently limited as the product is due to rolled out from April 2013 onwards, but you can register for alerts on sharetobuy.com for when such properties are uploaded and from time to time you can also find Rent to buy properties and Intermediate Market Rent apartments at www.sharetobuy.com/firststeps. Share to buy is an affordable homes property portal provider and the official partner of the GLA and the Mayor of London in delivering the FIRST STEPS property portal.
The London Borough of Tower Hamlets forms the core of the East End. It lies east of the City of London and north of the River Thames. Use of the term "East End" in a pejorative sense began in the late 19th century, with the concentration of docks and clothing factories providing work for large numbers for unskilled workers. The borough has always attracted immigrants, from the Huguenot refugees who settled in the Spitalfields area in the 17th century, to the Bangladeshis in this century. Much of the housing in the area was devastated by the bombing of the docks in the Second World War and the rebuilding has mostly consisted of council flats. With the closure of the docks in the 1970’s Canary Wharf has been developed into a dynamic centre for financial services and flats for private ownership. The borough is served for transport, with the District Line, the Central Lines and the Docklands Light Railway. Tower Hamlets was one of the host boroughs to the Olympic Games. Search for affordable housing in Tower Hamlets on the First Steps property portal.