Report takes aim at ‘shortcomings’ of shared ownership

The shared ownership scheme frequently fails to deliver on its promises, according to a new report.

Published by Shared Ownership Resources, a project “championing the interests of shared owners and homebuyers considering shared ownership”, the report – Shared Ownership: The Consumer Perspective – says there is no evidence that shared ownership succeeds as a pathway to full home ownership for the majority of shared ownership households.

It also argues that conflicts of interest arising from the cross-subsidy housing model make ‘win win’ scenarios less likely, and that the government’s initial eligibility and affordability assessment calculator ignores inevitable future increases in total housing costs. 

The report makes a total of 18 recommendations to improve outcomes for shared owners, including:

  • Tackle mis-selling and deliver an enforceable Code of Practice for shared ownership marketing and promotion;
  • Reform initial affordability assessments to take on board future total housing costs;
  • Strengthen regulatory oversight of ongoing affordability;
  • Improve data collection, evaluation and reporting on outcomes to drive meaningful reform;
  • Provide earlier and greater support for households where shared ownership is becoming financially unsustainable (including ‘buy back’ in order to maintain social housing stock);
  • Assess value-for-money of the shared ownership scheme, both for shared owners and for the public purse.

Commenting on the report, Paula Higgins, CEO of the HomeOwners Alliance, said: “It’s about time that we take a more forensic look at the shared ownership tenure to understand how successful it is to help first time buyers start their journey into being a homeowner.

“Does it give a helping hand or does it trap people in some sort of limbo between renting and owning that ultimately costs them more and they cannot escape from? 

“The shortcomings of shared ownership identified in the report should not be used as an excuse to kill shared ownership as we are in the middle of an affordable housing crisis. The challenge is to get it right.”


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One Comment

  1. Woodentop

    I couldn’t agree more with this story. Housing associations have occupiers stuck with them and they know it.


    ” ……….. there is no evidence that shared ownership succeeds as a pathway to full home ownership for the majority of shared ownership households.


    Lets call it for what it really is. ‘Council Housing’. The only difference is they charge the occupier and are making money out of the shared tenant and been doing it for a very long time.


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