- February 17, 2013
- Posted by: Llandaff North Labour
- Category: Latest News
What is the Assisted Home Ownership Scheme?
The Assisted Home Ownership Scheme is designed to assist first time buyers get a foot onto the property ladder and aid them with the purchase of their first home.
This scheme helps first time buyers on salaries where they cannot afford to buy a suitable property for their needs on the open market.
Working with private sector housebuilders, the scheme offers newly built properties on specific housing developments in Cardiff.
The scheme operates on a ‘shared equity’ basis. Which means that the Council or a nominated Housing Association retains a certain proportion of the equity of the property.
Developments under the scheme have generally worked on a 70 / 30 split with the remaining 30% equity share being held through a second charge (mortgage) on the property. Successful applicants would have to finance the 70% through a mortgage and personal savings.
The exact share available to purchase may differ and will be dependent upon the criteria of the development available under the scheme. As the scheme operated on a shared equity basis, applicants do not have to pay rent on the share of the property they do not own.
With Shared Equity you repay the share that you do not own when you decide to sell the property or buy it outright. You will always buy back the retained percentage based on the current market value at the time. Therefore you might not necessarily repay the original purchase price as if the property increases you will pay back more than was retained when you first undertook the purchase.
The majority of the developments on the scheme are operated under the shared equity model. However we may on occasion have shared ownership opportunities. This differs from shared equity as ‘shared ownership’; with this option you pay a discounted rent on the share that you do not own.
With shared ownership a person can, for instance, purchase 40 percent of a property and pay rent on the remaining 60 percent, which they do not own. Buying a property under this scheme allows a person to buy further shares (this is known as ‘staircasing’). This means that a person can achieve 100 percent ownership, if they wish, depending on the terms of the lease.
The properties available on the scheme are all new build developments and some properties will become available when existing owners who have bought though the scheme wish to sell their property. We refer to these as ‘resales’.
When you decide that you wish to sell your property you must notify the council first. This is because we attempt to find a buyer from the database to purchase your property.
Following an agreed value for the property the Council will have a certain amount of time to locate a buyer for your property. However if we fail to find a buyer in the agreed time then you are free to sell the property on the open market and repay the Council or Housing Association (depending on who retained the equity) their share of the agreed purchase price.
You will first need to register on the Assisted Home Ownership Database by contacting the Council and asking for a registration form.
The registration form helps us to assess your eligibility for the scheme. We ask for information about your current housing circumstances, your income, your proposed household, and future housing preferences and requirements.
Once registered, you will be sent a letter confirming that your details are on the database.
You will be contacted regarding upcoming developments once we have received notification from the developer that they available. When this happens, application packs for these developments will be sent out to everyone that has chosen either this development or the particular area of that development on their registration form.
You will need to submit a separate application form for each development you are interested in.
How do I apply for a property under the scheme?
You will need to provide certain information with your application, including proof of income, savings and outgoings, proof of address, and a mortgage certificate or equivalent for 70% of the property price.
This information is used to assess whether each applicant meets the eligibility criteria and financial requirements for the development.
All eligible applications will then be marked against a pre set criteria. Those applicants with the highest scores will be awarded priority status and a financial assessment will be undertaken. Those that are successful will be nominated to the available properties and a provisional offer of nomination will be made.
All successful, nominated applicants will be required to produce confirmation of their mortgage offer before a formal offer of nomination can be made. Also if you are nominated, in some cases you will have to pay a reservation fee. This fee will be deducted from the final charges.
If you need the registration form or any comments /questions, please get in touch with us.
Cllr Dilwar Ali – Email: Dilwar.Ali@cardiff.gov.uk, Mobile: 07734 880397 – Tel: 2062 4134
Cllr Siobhan Corria – Email: Siobhan.Corria@cardiff.gov.uk, Mobile: 07805 305925 – Tel: 2056 9086
Information and Image copy from the Cardiff Council’s website :-