Shared Ownership

Our fixed fee conveyancing solicitors can help you navigate the process of buying and selling a shared ownership property. Shared ownership transactions have their own complexities, so it is important to instruct a solicitor who understands shared ownership schemes.

For a free quote, call us on 0191 567 7244 and we’ll be delighted to help.

You can also email or complete our free online enquiry form and we will be in touch with you shortly.

How can our shared ownership conveyancing solicitors help you?

We frequently act for clients who wish to buy, sell, or purchase additional shares of a shared ownership property (known as staircasing). This expertise is vital when it comes to shared ownership schemes. The process is very different to buying or selling a property on the open market, especially if the property is a new build.

Shared ownership properties come with very specific terms, conditions and restrictions. We make sure that you understand exactly what is required of you, and the implications of your shared ownership scheme.

​Our shared ownership conveyancing solicitors will:

  • Explain the terms and conditions of the shared ownership scheme in plain English
  • Check that your mortgage, contract and Stamp Duty Land Tax comply with the shared ownership requirements
  • Carry out property checks and searches
  • Manage every aspect of the conveyancing transaction
  • Raise issues with the developer if the property is a new build
  • Liaise between your lender and the landlord
  • Help you purchase more shares of the shared ownership property
  • Represent you when selling a shared ownership property

We use specialist software that means ID verification is swift and secure, and can be done from the comfort of your own sofa.

Fixed fee conveyancing solicitors

We offer a transparent, fixed fee conveyancing service.  Contact us to discuss your shared ownership purchase or sale and we will provide a fixed fee quote with no hidden charges. That way, you can keep an eye on your budget, confident in the knowledge that there will be no extra expenses further down the line.

What you need to know about shared ownership

Shared ownership can be a good way to get on the property ladder, especially if there is little affordable housing in your area. However, it might not be for everyone. Here’s what you need to know before you commit to a purchase.

What is shared ownership?

Shared ownership is when you buy a share of a property which you then live in. The remaining share is owned by the landlord, which is usually either a housing association or registered social landlord. This means that you are both a home-owner and a tenant.

You can buy your share with savings or with the help of a mortgage. You pay rent to the landlord for the share they own. Depending on the terms of the agreement, you may be able to buy more shares from the landlord until you own 100% of the property.

Is everyone eligible for shared ownership?

Not everyone is eligible to buy a shared ownership property. It is only available to people who:

  1. Cannot afford the deposit and mortgage payments for a home that meets their needs; and
  2. Have a household income of £80,000 or less, or £90,000 or less if they live in London (although these figures are subject to change

One of the following must also apply:

  • You are a first-time buyer
  • You used to own a home but cannot afford to buy one now
  • You are forming a new household – for example, after a relationship breakdown
  • You are an existing shared owner, and you want to move
  • You own a home and want to move but cannot afford a new home that meets your needs

What are the restrictions on shared ownership properties?

When you buy a shared ownership property, you are restricted by certain terms and conditions until you own 100% of the property. For example, you:

  • Cannot make improvements or alterations to the property without the landlord’s consent
  • Cannot sell the property without first offering it to the landlord
  • Cannot sell the property on the open market until the landlord has been given time to nominate their own buyer
  • Cannot break the terms of your lease, such as failing to pay rent
  • Cannot sublet your entire home without the landlord’s permission
  • Can only buy a certain number of shares, depending on when you bought the property and the terms of the lease
  • Can only use certain mortgage lenders, as not all lenders offer products to shared ownership buyers

What other costs will I have to pay?

Shared ownership properties are leasehold. This means that you may have to pay a service charge on top of your mortgage repayments and your rent. Some properties also come with other monthly costs such as an estate charge, a management fee and a repairs reserve fund.

You may also have to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax when you buy the property.

Can I buy more shares of a shared ownership property?

You can buy shares from the landlord, although the terms vary from lease to lease. Buying more shares is known as ‘staircasing’. When you buy more shares, the property may have to be valued at your own cost. You may also be charged an administration fee by the landlord. The more shares you own, the less rent you pay.

If you buy under an Older People’s Shared Ownership scheme, you can only own 75% of the property. If you own 75%, then you do not pay rent on the remaining 25%. Properties in designated protected areas may also be capped at 80% of the property value.

How do I sell a shared ownership property?

The way in which you sell a shared ownership property depends on the terms of the lease, and the number of shares you own.

If you own 100% of the property, then you can usually sell it on the open market. If not, you must give the landlord the right of first refusal to buy the property. The landlord also has the right to nominate a buyer, although this must be done within a certain timeframe. Once this timeframe has elapsed, you can sell the property privately or with the help of an estate agent. However, the buyer must be eligible under the shared ownership scheme.

If your lease contains a mandatory buyback clause, then you cannot sell the property on the open market. The landlord will determine who buys it.

Get a free quote

Our residential conveyancing solicitors act on a fixed fee basis. We will provide a fixed fee quote with no hidden charges.

Call 0191 567 7244 for a free, no-obligation quote from our residential conveyancing team. We are here to assist you.​

Alternatively, you can email us at or complete our free online enquiry form, and we will contact you shortly.

Two people in suits shaking hands
Cooklaw C Icon

Navigating the legal maze can at times be daunting. We understand the complexities of the law and are dedicated to providing you with expert guidance and comprehensive solutions for all aspects of property and wealth related matters.

Let Cooklaw be your trusted guide. Contact us today to receive the clarity and confidence you deserve. 0191 567 7244