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“I’d been priced out of the market”

Lorraine has always loved village life. She was desperate to put down permanent roots in the Derbyshire village of Brailsford, but found herself priced out of the market.

“I sold my family home and moved to Brailsford a few years ago to take up a work opportunity in Derby.

“I’ve only ever lived in villages and I don’t like the thought of living in a big town. I’d rented here for a few years and love it, but when my landlord decided to sell the house I was living in, I was stuck.

“I was desperate to stay in Brailsford, but I couldn’t find any other properties to rent. I’d looked at the new houses being built in the village, but the prices are so expensive. I had money from my house sale but it was not enough to buy a property here and I didn’t want to be taking on a mortgage so close to retirement.

“I’d never heard of shared ownership before a colleague mentioned it. I did a Google search and found these NCHA shared ownership properties, right on the same new development I had been looking at previously. It was fate!

“The houses were already part built when I first came to have a look. I originally wanted the house round the corner, and had put a deposit down, but when I saw them, the layout of the garden, the position of the houses and the light, I changed my mind, and opted for this one instead.

“I had such great support from the NCHA Sales team. They were marvellous and helped me with any concerns or worries. I provide respite care for my granddaughter every other weekend and I was under a tight deadline to move. The team helped take the pressure off and made the transition easy.

“The process was so simple. I had to apply to Help to Buy East Midlands first to get a reference number, then I was free to contact NCHA.

“I was really keen to avoid taking on another mortgage, so from the sale of my old house, I brought 75% of my home outright and I now pay rent on the remaining 25%.

“If I can I will look to buy the remaining 25% at some point [this is called staircasing] but if I can’t, the rent will be affordable once I enter retirement.

“I have a lot of plans. I want to put a conservatory on the back, and build a decking and patio area. I have to write to request permission from NCHA to make big changes, but I have so much more freedom than you do in a rented home.

“I keep recommending shared ownership to everyone; friends whose children are looking to buy, even my own daughter!

“I think people are hesitant because they don’t understand what shared ownership is. They don’t realise that you get the option to buy more as you can afford it.

“If someone is considering shared ownership, my advice is to just go for it!”

Nottingham Community Housing Association has properties available for shared ownership across the East Midlands. Take a look at our available properties