This is a sponsored article on behalf of Notting Hill Genesis.
For many of us, home ownership might seem like an all-too distant prospect right now. It's an especially common feeling in the capital, where higher-than-average property prices present an extra challenge to aspiring first-time buyers attempting to grow their saving amidst the rising cost of living.
But that first rung of the property ladder might not be as far away as you think — thanks to Shared Ownership. This government scheme allows you to purchase a share of a property and pay subsidised rent to a housing association like Notting Hill Genesis on the remainder.
With Shared Ownership, you only need to raise a deposit for your starting share — which can be as little as 25% — rather than the property's full market value. That could mean as little as four figures! Not only are upfront costs dramatically lower, but your monthly rent and mortgage repayments could be lower than paying a mortgage on a whole property or renting on the open market.
And your starting share is just that: you have the option of increasing your share over time, eventually "staircasing" your way to full home ownership.
Shared Ownership can have less obvious advantages, too. Like the fact that properties on the scheme are usually new builds. That means homes kitted out with the latest appliances, increased energy efficiency, and less maintenance required — all of which could help you reduce costly bills.
Notting Hill Genesis has a huge range of homes of this nature across London, all with excellent transport links and situated in vibrant, growing communities. Here are three of our favourites:
Aspect Croydon (1-3 beds)
Where is it? In the heart of east Croydon, right by Wellesley Road tram stop. Foodie hotspot Boxpark — which also hosts movie screenings, live music, and comedy nights — is just a few minutes' walk away. But if you miss central London, trains from East Croydon station (located a five-minute walk from the development) can get you to Victoria and London Bridge in under half an hour.
What's it got going for it? Dual aspect apartments, floor-to-ceiling windows, and private winter gardens with every home. The development also boasts a concierge service and a flexible mezzanine communal space.
How much? One-bedroom apartments start at £87,500 for a 25% share.
Kidbrooke Square (1-2 beds)
Where is it? The Royal Borough of Greenwich, super close to Kidbrooke Station (the development boasts direct access). From there, you can reach London Bridge in just 18 minutes. Closer to home, there's the award-winning Cator Park, with its grassland, meadows and wetlands.
What's it got going for it? Open plan living areas. Solar panels and eco-friendly appliances. Private outdoor space. A concierge service is also on offer, and a residents' gym is in the works. Onsite shops and a cafe are also planned.
How much? One-bedroom apartments start at £90,625 for a 25% share.
Indigo House (1-3 beds)
Where is it? Royal Albert Wharf — a vibrant waterside community in the Royal Docks, just minutes from Gallion Reach DLR station (ideal for Canary Wharf and City commuters!) This up-and-coming creative hub is home to Bow Arts, which hosts community workshops, exhibitions, classes and more. Other local highlights include Café Spice Namaste by award-winning celebrity chef Cyrus Todiwala.
What's it got going for it? Bosch integrated appliances. Energy-efficient underfloor heating. A landscaped linear park with a children's play area. There's a concierge service here, too, and gym and a nursery are both forthcoming.
How much? One-bedroom apartments start at £77,500 for a 25% share.