Our criteria tool below allows you to search or filter to find the information you need about criteria for your Shared Ownership cases. If you’d prefer a printed version, you can download a PDF copy of our Shared Ownership criteria here.
Last updated 5 July 2021.
The Stamp Duty incentive was extended until 30 June 2021. This meant that clients could complete their purchase of a property up to the value of £500,000 without paying Stamp Duty.
To smooth the transition back to the normal threshold, the nil rate band now applies to properties up to the value of £250,000 until 30 September 2021 before returning to £125,000 on 1 October 2021.
Your client needs to ensure there is sufficient time for their conveyancer to complete all the legal work required to enable their mortgage application to complete before the threshold change.
It is in their own interest to instruct their conveyancer at the earliest opportunity so that they are in the best position to meet this deadline. Please note that any costs incurred for starting the legal process early will need to be met by your client if the case does not progress to completion.
It is important to note that if their application does not complete by the date outlined above, they will be liable to pay any Stamp Duty related to their purchase.
Housing Association Criteria
1,000 properties minimum (refer if local authority).
Must be regulated by the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) and be either a registered Housing Association or a registered provider appearing on the HCA register; https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/current-registered-providers-of-social-housing.
The lease must adhere to the model produced by the HCA and incorporate a Mortgage Protection Clause.
Governance & Viability
Compliant G1 and G2, Viability V1 and V2 (refer if local authority)
21 – if joint application, at least one applicant must be 21.
Normally the loan must be repaid before the oldest applicant’s state retirement age detailed below or applicant’s stated intended retirement age, whichever is lower.
Date of Birth State Retirement Age From 6 April 1950- 5 June 1953 63 From 6 June 1953- 5 September 1953 64 From 6 September 1953- 5 October 1954 65 From 6 October 1954- 5 March 1961 66 From 6 March 1961-5 April 1978 67 From 6 April 1978 onwards 68
Maximum Number of Applicants
Help to Buy Sustainability Assessment
The applicant must pass the Help to Buy Sustainability Assessment prior to the application being received by the Society.
CCJs & Defaults
CCJs/Defaults within the last 3 years are not acceptable.
CCJs/Defaults => 3 years prior to application are acceptable up to a maximum £2,500, subject to an explanation and being cleared/satisfied 12 months prior to application.
No other adverse entries must show on credit file.
CCJs/Defaults are not acceptable over 80% LTV.
Up to 80% LTV
Mortgage, Loan and HP arrears & missed payments => 3 years prior to application, status 1 and 2 are accepted – status 3 or above not accepted.
Mortgage, Loan, HP arrears and missed payments within the last 3 years are not acceptable.
Credit Card, Mail Order, Utility commitments => 3 years prior to application – Up to and including status 2’s are acceptable.
Credit Card, Mail Order, Utility <3 years prior to application – Status 2 – ok to proceed subject to the commitment being up to date for a minimum of 12 months prior to application. =< Status 3 are ok subject to commitments totalling less than £500 and being up to date for a minimum of 12 months prior to application.
Above 80% LTV
Mortgage, Loan and HP arrears and missed payments are not acceptable.
Credit card, Mail Order, Utility commitments- a maximum of 3 status 2s are acceptable if less than £100. No other adverse entries within the last 3 years must show on the credit file.
For non-UK nationals we require the applicant(s) to have resided in the UK for a minimum of 2 years. We will also require proof of indefinite leave to remain/residence certificate, or settled or pre-settled status in the UK.
Minimum of 6 months in current job and not in probation.
LTV >80% – The applicant must have been contracting for a minimum of 3 years.
LTV< 80% – The applicant must have been contracting for a minimum of 1 year with a further 2 years experience in the same field.
Zero hour contracts accepted – please refer.
LTV >80% – The applicant must have been in their current business for a minimum of 3 years.
LTV< 80% – The applicant must have been in their current business for a minimum of 1 year with a further 2 years experience in the same field.
Directors with a shareholding of more than 25% will also be classified as self-employed.
Applicants’ own deposit or gift from an immediate family member (spouse, parent, grandparent, sibling,
child or grandchild) is acceptable. Evidence of the source of deposit is required.
We capture gross annual income and net monthly income details. In addition we may also consider;
60% of regular overtime, bonus or commission (avg. of these over the last 2 years P60).
Up to 100% of second employed income, subject to length of service meeting criteria.
For applicants on fixed-term contracts of less than 6 months, the minimum period of employment with the same employer is 6 months. For those on contracts of 6-12 months or more, the contract must have been renewed at least once. If the contract is for more than 12 months, the applicant must be more than 6 months into the contract.
We require 2 years accounts covering a 3 year-period, together with 3 years tax computations/SA302s to establish income. We assess the income by averaging the last 3 years income or we will take the most recent year, whichever is lowest of the two.
Certified Accounts need to be signed and dated within 18 months. In addition, we would require sight of recent Business Bank Statements.
For sole traders we will accept 3 years tax overviews and SA302s supported with 3 months Business Bank Statements subject to underwriter approval. We will consider cases with 1 years trading accounts and 2 years P60 if previously employed in the same field, max LTV 80%.
Applicants operating on an hourly or daily rate of pay are acceptable, max 80% LTV. Offshore Umbrella Companies are not acceptable. Minimum 6 months completed contract with evidence of past/present/future contracts. CIS workers are acceptable, max 80% LTV. We require a minimum of 12 months evidence of minimum employment and latest 3 years tax overviews/SA302s or previous years P60s in same line of work.
100% private and/or state pension.
The Society may also take into account a percentage of any payments received in respect of investment, dividend or rental income if evidenced by 3 years SA302s and accounts or SA100s.
100% of maintenance can be used if court ordered or payments can be evidenced on the most recent 6 months’ bank statements.
100% child benefit payment, 50% working and child tax credits (for children up to age 14). For us to accept this, the applicant must be in receipt of the income for the full term of the mortgage.
100% of benefits which are subject to a lifetime award such as PIP and ESA.
Minimum income requirement is £17,500 per application.
Maximum joint income to qualify is £80,000 outside of London, or £90,000 in London.
Minimum loan size £30,000
Maximum loan size: £375,000
Based on the minimum share available to purchase (25% – our minimum loan size is £30,000)
Minimum 5 years (product dependant).
Maximum 35 years.
We will not consider remortgage applications.
Capital repayment only.
Interest Only Repayment Vehicle
We will not accept Interest Only as a repayment option.
Let to Buy
Not accepted. Lease will prohibit sub-letting (not lodger or paying guest).
Consent from Provider needed to sub-let.
Consent from the Society cannot automatically be given.
The Society requires evidence from the Provider that they are agreeable to the let.
The Society requires sight of the length of time (if applicable) the Provider has agreed for the property to be let.
Fees would be applicable subject to approval of enquiry.
Right to Buy
No other property is to be owned by any applicant (unless simultaneous exchange & completion of sale property to acquire this property).
Home improvements – not accepted.
Debt consolidation – not accepted.
Staircasing/Buying out Leaseholder/Complying with covenants: 10% minimum staircasing/max up to 25% (multiple tranches can be completed the same day to purchase more than 25% if deemed appropriate. Please refer to underwriting.) For New Model Lease 2021-2026 staircasing increases reduce from 10% minimum to 5%.
Shares bought at the open market value.
Final step to full ownership must be minimum 10%. Full ownership and transfer of the freehold to be simultaneous.
Release of Part Security
Not applicable due to leasehold.
Minimum Property Value
Maximum Property Value
England and Wales.
Property Types: No self-builds. Flats/apartments are not acceptable. Must be standard residential construction.
The property must be the main residence of the applicant(s).
Properties must be of traditional construction.
Timber framed properties may be considered if brick clad.
New build houses subject to NHBC/Local Authority Building Control Scheme/Premier/Checkmate (Castle 10)/Buildzone/Zurich/ICW (International Construction Warranties)/AHCI Ltd or Professional Consultants Certificates.
Leasehold Only. Model Lease 2010+ (earlier for remortgage/resale separate undertaking for 28 days’ notice). For New Model Lease 2021-2026, the minimum share purchase is reduced from 25% to 10% and staircasing increases reduce from 10% minimum to 5%.
Any construction covered by Housing Defect Legislation such as high alumina cement, prefabricate reinforced concrete, large panel system, BISF.
Studio flats and ex local authority flats.
New build flats.
Flats above commercial property.
No commercial activity.
Any property where an EWS1 form for wall cladding is required.
Purchase of property currently in a company name – not accepted.
For leasehold, there must be a minimum of 85 years unexpired lease at the start of the mortgage and 55 years remaining at the end.
Ground rent/estate rent charges within policy if applicable.