FAQs

If you're thinking about buying your first Shared Ownership home, you may have lots of questions.

This page answers some of the most common questions Shared Owners ask.

For common questions about Rent to Buy, please refer to our Guide to Rent to Buy.

Repairs


Q

Am I responsible for repairs and maintenance?

A

Yes, as a Shared Owner you will be responsible for carrying out your own repairs. If you live in an apartment you are responsible for repairs within your property however any communal repairs will be carried out by LMH.

Q

Am I responsible for maintenance of gas appliances?

A

You are responsible for ensuring gas appliances in your home are serviced regularly. We recommend that you arrange this once a year in order to ensure your appliances are safe and working efficiently.

Not carrying out a regular service could invalidate your building insurance and result in a breach of the lease.

Q

What is a service charge and what does this cover?

A

The service charge covers the cost of additional services we may provide to you. In a house this normally includes building insurance and a management fee.  In an apartment it will also include repairs to communal areas and a contribution to a sinking fund.

You will need to obtain your own contents insurance.

Q

Can I carry out alterations to my property?

A

Yes, you can make decorative alterations to your property; however any major internal alterations would require LMH’s written permission. Please note, structural alterations may not be permitted due to the terms and conditions in your lease. If you wish to discuss this further, please contact us to request an Alteration Request Form.

Shared Ownership


Q

Can I buy a Shared Ownership Home?

A

Yes, you can buy a Shared Ownership home if you;

  • Are a first time buyer
  • Have an income of less than £80,000 per year
  • Are in permanent employment, including self-employment
  • Are a home owner looking to downsize 
  • Cannot purchase a property on the open market

** Please be advised that some restrictions including CCJ’s, bankruptcy or repossession in the last 5-6 years may apply**    


Q

What if I am current home owner?

A

If you already own a home, you are not eligible for Shared Ownership unless you have sold, or are in the process of selling, your home prior to applying.


Q

Do I need a deposit?

A

Yes, you will need to have a deposit but only on the share you buy. This will be determined by your mortgage lender and could be a minimum of 5%.


Q

As a Shared Owner, why do I have to pay rent when I own the property?

A

As you have only purchased a certain share in the property you will be liable to pay a reduced rent to LMH for the share you do not own. The higher the share you buy the lower your rent will be.


Q

How do I pay my rent and service charge?

A

The preferred way to pay is by monthly direct debit. The leasehold team will contact you once you have moved in to set this up.


Q

What happens if I can’t pay my rent or mortgage?

A

If you experience any financial difficulties or have any problems with making your monthly payments, you should contact our Leasehold Management Team to discuss possible outcomes.  


Q

Can I purchase additional shares in my property?

A

Yes, after your initial purchase you can buy further shares in your home and could eventually own 100%. This is known as ‘Staircasing'. The price of extra shares is based on the market value of your home at the time you wish to buy them.


Q

Can I sublet my property?

A

Unfortunately you cannot sublet a Shared Ownership property. If you’re going to be away from your property for an extended period of time, please contact the Leasehold and Sales Team to discuss.


Q

What if I want to sell my home?

A

You can sell your home any time. Your lease will set out the rules on selling your property. Please contact our Leasehold Management Team for more information.


Q

What happens if I die after buying a Shared Ownership home?

A

If you die, your shared ownership lease can be passed on or sold in line with your will or the law of intestacy (dying without making a will). If you hold a joint tenancy, the lease automatically passes across.


Q

Can I have a pet?

A

There are not usually any restrictions to keeping a pet in your home however please refer to your lease. Some restrictions may apply therefore written permission may need to be granted by LMH.