So, what should I include in my shared ownership property viewing checklist? There are many questions you may want to ask before and during your viewing of a shared ownership property. These could be questions about both the internal and external factors affecting your choice of buying a shared ownership home.
Some of the questions you may want to ask could be;
What does the price include?
Shared ownership involves you paying a portion of the mortgage, rent and also service charges. You should clarify how much these will be with the housing provider so that you can see if this is something you can afford.
Shared ownership property repairs, who is responsible?
There are some repairs that the customer is liable for and some repairs which the housing provider is responsible for. For example, if the boiler was to break, this should be arranged to be repaired by the provider. However, if you were to break a mirror in the property, it would be your responsibility to fix. You can ask the housing provider for details of this when you go for a viewing or you can enquire beforehand.
Are shared ownership properties fully furnished?
No, shared ownership properties are not usually furnished. However, sometimes housing providers may furnish them if they have been used as a show home or if they have been used as part of an incentive. Again, the housing provider will be able to inform you if the property comes furnished or not.
Can I decorate my shared ownership property?
You will need to find out from the housing association you are buying it from. You should be able to do some basic changes, but it is best to check with the housing provider first. However, it is unlikely that you will be able to make any structural changes to the building.
You should also ask questions which information online is not able to answer, such as;
- What are the neighbours like?
- What is the surrounding area like?
- If you are not from the area you may want to ask what amenities and facilities are nearby, are there nice restaurants and shopping centres that you can visit?
- Are there places for children to play and socialise?
- Is there a train station within close proximity?
- Are there regular buses to and from the area?
A lot of the questions that you would ask are similar to ones that you would ask when viewing a rental property. The most crucial questions to ask when viewing a shared ownership property would be focused on the payments, the location and the staircasing opportunities.