Major first-time buyer events this weekend crown Shared Ownership Week
This weekend, first-time buyers looking to purchase a new home through Help to Buy or Shared Ownership have a chance to find out all about their options at two major property events in London and Cheshire, both of which are free to attend by interested house-hunters.
The First Time Buyer Home Show, taking place at the Business Design Centre in Islington, and the Help to Buy show at Crewe Hall are both happening this Saturday (10 October) and provide would-be homeowners with the chance to meet housebuilders and developers, see the choice of new homes available, get independent legal and financial advice and find out all the details about the government’s two popular property purchase assistance schemes.
Shared Ownership and Help to Buy are both designed to help people onto the property ladder who can’t afford to buy a suitable home without some sort of financial help.
A survey of over 1,000 first-timers conducted by First Time Buyer Magazine has found that one third of them in London don’t have more than £10,000 saved to buy their first property and that despite this lack of savings, just over half of those surveyed still have plans to make it onto the property ladder this year.
Lynda Clark, editor of First Time Buyer magazine, says: “When it comes down to it, the lack of deposit is the biggest barrier for most aspiring homebuyers today. Although we have recently seen a return of more 95% mortgages through mainstream lenders, a bigger deposit saved will mean access to lower interest rates, therefore making monthly repayments more affordable. First-time buyers need to make proper plans to save as ultimately it is the only way they will be able to take these first steps onto the housing ladder.”
From Sandy Kelly, head of Help to Buy North West, which is organising the Cheshire show, believes attending one of these events will dispel a lot of misunderstandings about the two assistance schemes.
“There are so many misconceptions about the scheme which have left many with the belief that they are not eligible to take part in the scheme,” she says. “Our aim is to clear up all of these Help to Buy myths and help more people onto the property ladder.
“Help to Buy includes the equity loan scheme, as well as Shared Ownership. Across these two schemes there really is something on offer to help every would-be home buyer.
“Shared Ownership enables you to buy a share in your new home ranging from 25% to 75%, meaning that it is flexible according to your budget. The remaining share is taken on by a housing association and you will then be able to pay a reduced rent on this portion of your property. This means that you need to get a smaller mortgage to buy the property, and will also need a smaller deposit.
“You can buy your home with Shared Ownership if your household earns £60,000 a year or less or you’re a first-time buyer, or you used to own a home, but can’t afford to buy one now.”
Lynda Clark will be at the London event and adds: “The show is a useful event for first-time buyers who want to find out all of the opportunities available to them in the current market. Depending on what budget they have, there will be some great properties available; from one-bedroom apartments in central locations to family homes within commuting distance of the Capital. For many, just having access to free financial advice will be a good way to kick-start the homebuying process and set expectations at a more realistic level.”
Sandy Kelly is urging property seekers in the North West to come to Crewe Hall for the same reasons: “This event is a must-visit for anyone considering their next steps on the property ladder. We would love anyone who is considering buying a home in Chester to come along to this event. Whether they are first time buyers or second steppers, this great event pulls together expert advice from all areas.”