Here to help you find your new home
This seems too good to be true, what’s the catch?
There is no catch, and no hidden rent or interest charges like other forms of affordable and intermediate housing such as traditional shared ownership and help to buy.
We have an aspiration to revolutionise how affordable housing is provided so that it is truly affordable, and we felt that other forms of affordable home ownership didn’t do this as well as it could be done. That’s why we created Keep Homes Shared Ownership!
How do I apply for a Keep Homes property?
To apply, or to be kept up to date with information on our current and future properties, please register your interest here.
Is Keep Homes a Housing association (HA) or registered provider (RP)?
Keep Homes is not a HA or RP and does not (at present) plan to become one. Instead, we will remain a private entity that offers an alternative affordable housing solution based upon the Ethical Housing Market concept that we have developed.
We have a Registered Provider partner who oversee the management of all of our homes.
What protections have been built in for properties that are designated affordable to preserve the concept?
Keep Homes, working with local authorities, has devised a set of ownership and occupational restrictions which eligible owners and renters will have to subscribe to. These include: -
- Initial qualifying criteria based upon affordability, income and job eligibility
- Investors prohibited in acquiring or renting
- Restrictions on sub-letting
- Prohibition on varying leases without consent from the local authority
- Prohibition on lease assignment without consent from Keep Homes
- Prohibitions on assignability without consent from Keep Homes
- Compliance with planning law and third-party rights
How do you use my data?
Keep Homes will not sell your data to marketing agencies in any circumstances! We only use the information when you register to see if you qualify for one of our products, based upon your personal circumstances.
Do you have a waiting list?
We do not operate a waiting list as such, but you can register your interest by creating an account and we will contact you when a suitable property comes up that meets with your requirements.
When will you contact me?
We usually start contacting registered individuals who have met the criteria about 6 to 9 months before the property is due to be ready. However, please check out our property listings page for regular updates on upcoming developments.
When can I view the property I am interested in buying or renting?
You can make an appointment to view our properties as soon as they have launched.
What happens once I’ve registered?
Once you have registered, we will process your application as soon as we can. We will need to check your pre-qualification, so we may need to ask you some more questions and we will need proof of ID. If you are looking to buy, we will discuss the range of purchase options available and refer you to our mortgage partner to assist you with the mortgage process.
What is a S106 agreement and how does it affect me?
Planning obligations - also known as Section 106 agreements - are agreements usually made between local authorities and developers and are negotiated as part of a condition of planning consent. In our case, the Section 106 agreement means that the home is only available to rent or buy for people who meet specific eligibility criteria. These restrictions stay with Keep Homes in perpetuity, meaning renters and owners are obliged to find a similar renter or buyer when they are ready to move on. Unless you staircase to 100% ownership!
What happens when I am ready to move on?
You can terminate your lease or sell your property at any time as long as it’s to people who meet the eligibility criteria, similarly to when you completed the qualification process.
Do I really not need to pay any rent?
No, you will never be charged any rent on a Keep Homes property so long as you buy the required minimum share of your home.
Do you really pay for your share of maintenance and service charges?
Yes! We never felt that it was fair for a household to pay 100% of the costs on a home they don’t own 100% (yet!). We therefore ensure that we pay for our fair share for the bit that we still own.
How does the ‘price freeze’ work?
We will ‘freeze’ the overall price of your home based upon your initial purchase meaning that you know exactly how much each 1% of staircasing will cost you, without the need for any valuations. For example, if you bought a share in a home valued at £250,000 then it will cost you £2,500 for each extra 1% of ownership you purchase.
The length of the ‘freeze’ is dependant on the value of the homes in the area you buy, but they are generally for 5 years.
The more you staircase during the ‘price freeze’ period, the more benefit you get from house price inflation on your home!
Please note that you will have to undertake a formal valuation if you choose to staircase by refinancing.
What happens if I cannot keep up with my mortgage payments?
We will do everything we can to assist you through any difficulties that you may have. However, in the event of default and foreclosure, we will adopt the following procedure: -
- Agree a moratorium period to allow time for another prospective owner/ occupier to take over the interest in the property.
- Keep Homes will consider purchasing the property for rental purposes.
- If Keep Homes is not in a position to acquire the property, we will make provision for another provider to purchase the property on the same terms.
- Where the property is not purchased within a specific time frame and all of the above options have been exhausted, the property will be released from affordable tenure, enabling the mortgagee to dispose of the property in order to regain some or all of the loan that they have provided.
How much do I need to earn to buy or rent a home?
This is area specific, but you may be eligible for one of our homes with a household income starting at £20,000 per annum. However, please check out the exact requirements for the property that you are looking to rent or buy.
The bank of Mum and Dad will help me toward my deposit, is this ok?
Absolutely, we recognise that buying even an affordable home is a challenge and many of our renters or buyers get help from parents or relatives.
Is there a building warranty with my new home?
All our homes have a 10-year building warranty, valid from the completion of the building. Building warranties such as these protect homeowners in case there are structural problems with the building as a whole, rather than applying to individual homes.
Can I snag my home before I move in?
If you are buying your home, there is a detailed pre-occupation snagging process. However, if there is anything that you are worried about please get in touch with one of our property managers and we will do what we can to rectify matters as soon as possible. In the case of a rental tenant, there will be a hand over and check in process that will deal with any such items.
Can I sublet all or part of my property?
This must be your primary residence, so subletting is not permitted as part of the qualifying criteria.
Do you provide car parking with your properties?
Generally, no we don’t, but check the specific criteria for the property you are looking to buy or rent.