Buy your own home … with help from the City Council

Press Release: 30/11/2016

Housing

Would-be home-owners could take their first step on the property ladder, thanks to an innovative new scheme being considered by Winchester City Council.

Cabinet proposes setting up an ‘Open-Market Shared Ownership’ scheme. This would support local residents by providing equity to buy a property in the district for those who do not have the substantial deposit required for a house.

Through charging a rent on the deposit element the Council will ensure a good financial return for the local taxpayer whilst ensuring that the Council’s investment activity is targeted in the local area.

Local residents will need to meet criteria to access the scheme, with higher scores for those who have lived in the district for over ten years, work in the district and are first-time buyers.

The household will normally own 70% of the property - with a deposit of at least 5% of this value depending on circumstances - with the Council owning a 30% share. In the future, the household can buy the Council out of its share.

Cllr Stephen Godfrey, the Leader of Winchester City Council, said:

This exciting new scheme is a great example of the Council’s more innovative approach to using taxpayers’ money to benefit local residents, as well as ensuring a good rate of return for all taxpayers across the district.
This scheme should help those residents who find it harder to save for a large deposit, but who have a good income to afford a mortgage. As a Council, we can be sure that we are getting a much better return from our investments than keeping money in the bank.