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Affordable home ownership

The Derbyshire Dales is an area with high average property prices and, like most parts of the United Kingdom, prices have risen faster than average incomes in recent years. This means that many people struggle to buy a home suitable for their family.

In recent years and the aftermath of difficulties in the banking sector, the requirements for much higher deposits has prevented many people from getting mortgages.  In April 2011, the average loan to value ratio for remortgages was 69%, and that for first time buyers was 80%.  This means the average first time buyer would need to find a deposit of 20% of the property's value.  It is not surprising, then, that the age of first-time buyers is rising, and this has knock-on effects right through the housing market.

One response to this is to help people to get onto the property ladder by buying a share of a property. This requires a smaller mortgage, and hence a smaller deposit, and it allows people to start building up capital value in their homes.

Help to Buy

Help to Buy - Shared Ownership is a scheme that allows you to purchase a share of a property and pay rent on the remaining share to a housing association.  The rent you pay is controlled by a national formula, so you can be confident it will not rise excessively.  Over time, you can purchase additional shares until, in some cases, you can own the property outright and stop paying rent.  (Be aware that in some rural parishes the share you can buy may be capped at 80%).

Further information on the shared ownership scheme is available on

Help to Buy - Equity Loan allows you to purchase a new property with a deposit of 5%. You then take an equity loan from the government (up to 20%) and a mortgage for the remainder of the value (at least 75%).  Unlike the mortgage, the equity loans are interest-free for five years, and are only repaid when you sell your property.

What properties are available?

All of these properties are advertised at Help to Buy Midlands.

Most of the Help to Buy properties become available on new housing developments, although older shared ownership properties occasionally become available.

Remember that you can also look at properties in other areas – you might find the perfect place just in a neighbouring authority (e.g. Amber Valley). There are sometimes local connection criteria to ensure that local people have the first call on new housing, but it is always worth enquiring whether these apply.

How do I apply?

You can check whether you are eligible and apply online through the Help to Buy Midlands website.

All applications for affordable home ownership in Derbyshire Dales are assessed and handled by Help to Buy Midlands.