Hackney-local Michaela was living in rented house-shares before buying a shared ownership home at Jolles House. Shared ownership worked out to be cheaper than privately renting, giving her the opportunity to get on the property ladder and stay in East London, close to her family and where she grew up.
What did you know about shared ownership before you bought your home?
I was introduced to the Share to Buy website about five years ago and I understood it was a scheme to part buy and part rent a property. I have been considering shared oownership for a while.
Why did you choose to buy a shared ownership property?
I wanted to live by myself (I have always lived in flat shares). It was an affordable way to stay in East London, close to my family and where I grew up. It is cheaper than privately renting a one bed flat in the area and it’s a bonus to also get a foot on the property ladder.
What impact has having your new home had on your day to day life?
It’s really nice to have my own space after flat sharing for my whole adult life. It’s small things like, where I lived before I was the only vegetarian and my preference would be not to have meat in the kitchen but I obviously couldn’t say anything because we all have to share the kitchen. But I am now able to have a meat-free kitchen! It’s also nice to have a locked bike shed so I don’t have to worry about my bike being on the street.
What is your favourite thing about your new home?
The balcony and dishwasher! I love having an outdoor space and I love my morning coffee on the balcony (sun permitting). I also HATE washing dishes, so I was sold on this place as soon as I saw the integrated dishwasher. The post-dinner clean-up has been cut in half! Generally, it’s just nice to be in a new build where everything is fresh and new. It was helpful not to have to worry about buying furniture because all of the white goods came with the flat.
Everybody that I have met in Jolles House has been super lovely; it has such a community vibe. My next door neighbour even bought me a plant!
Have you got any tips for someone who is considering buying a shared ownership property?
Do your research and know why it is the right choice for you. It was the right choice for me because it enables me to stay in my local area, live by myself and get on the property ladder. So in a nutshell, listen to advice but do your own research and consider your personal circumstances. There is a lot of paperwork but be patient. Your beautiful flat will make it all worthwhile.
Please tell us about your experience of buying your home through Poplar HARCA.
It has been such a good experience. I was unsure about how to practically go about purchasing a shared ownership home, but the lovely Poplar HARCA team walked me through the entire process, including recommending Mortgage Brokers, Solicitors etc. I have had so many questions and they have patiently and promptly answered all of them – they’ve just been super reassuring through this massive life decision. They even organised another viewing after I had already reserved the flat so that my mum could have a look!Find out more about our shared ownership homes