Buying your first home is the fulfilment of an aspiration for many people. So it’s important to make sure you are buying into a shared ownership scheme that is sold fairly, professionally and has high standards, with your interests at heart.
Over recent years a number of different homes have been developed for shared ownership. We develop and sell the government backed, standard shared ownership scheme. This offers you a level of consumer fairness and reassurance which other schemes may not.
When you buy a shared ownership home through Hastoe we promise you the following:
• You are buying from a government-recognised, not-for profit provider.
• Any surplus we make is used to develop new homes and improve existing homes and communities.
• We will use the government’s shared ownership lease, as agreed with major high street mortgage lenders.
• The lease we use contains fair terms, as approved by government, and is accepted by the major banks and building societies who provide shared ownership mortgages.
• We will carry out a proper and fair assessment of your ability to buy and sustain a shared ownership home; based on government guidelines.
• We use the government’s approved Affordability Calculator to make our assessment. If you are not eligible we will tell you why and suggest alternative suitable housing options.
• We will make available a panel of qualified financial advisors and solicitors who are fully independent, understand shared ownership and can help make sure your mortgage and legal transaction go smoothly.
• There is no obligation for you to use our panel, but using advisors and solicitors who understand shared ownership may save you time and money.
• We will only charge rents in accordance with government guidelines.
• The rents we charge on the part of the home you do not own are capped by the government to ensure they remain fair and reasonable.
• The value of the home will be a fair market value.
We always take advice from qualified chartered surveyors on our selling prices and we will keep prices as affordable as possible.
• The home you buy will be built to high energy efficiency standards.
• You can buy more shares in your home, up to a maximum of 80% or 100% depending on restrictions within your lease.
• There is no obligation for you to buy additional shares, but we offer support if you want to explore this option.
• When you choose to sell we will help you find a buyer.
• Your lease will give us a period of time, usually 8-12 weeks, to find a buyer for your home. For rural schemes in particular, we use this time to find another purchaser with the right local connection who is in need of a shared ownership home.
• We will manage your service charges in a clear and consistent way.
• We will explain what any service charge covers before you buy your home.
• We will give you access to a fair and transparent complaints process.
We publish a clear complaints process which you can use if you are unhappy with any aspect of our service. This includes recourse to the independent Housing Ombudsman if you exhaust our process and the issue is unresolved. Lowen Homes is the new commercial arm of Hastoe who has been developing and managing government-backed shared ownership homes for over 25 years. We currently own and manage 695 shared ownership homes.
Buying from an established and experienced shared ownership provider may prove important when you come to sell your home. We are a rural specialist and work closely with communities to develop new homes and meet the needs of local people. We are committed to sensitive, sympathetic design and high standards of environmental build and performance.