Shared ownership helps Lancashire lass Rachel return to Grimsargh

September 20, 2022 | Dan Todd

Rachel in her lounge at Elston Park

Years after leaving the picturesque village of Grimsargh in Lancashire, 44-year-old Rachel has returned to find her forever home with the help of shared ownership.

School counsellor Rachel first bought a home in the village near Preston over 20 years ago before meeting her husband and moving away. However, after separating from her husband last year, she decided to move back to Grimsargh to live with her mum while saving for a deposit on a place of her own.

Rachel knew she wanted to stay in the area so that she could remain close to her elderly mum, and the new Elston Park development being built by Story Homes directly across the road from her mum’s house ticked all the boxes. But Rachel was unsure if she could afford to buy one of the new-build homes on her own… until she heard about shared ownership.

Rachel explains: “I just went into the [Story Homes] site office and said, ‘Look, I’ll have x-amount of pounds on such a date. What can you offer me?’ They said that the best thing I could do was to look at the shared ownership homes, and they gave me Onward Living’s details.”

A certain number of homes at Elston Park had been set aside for Onward Living to sell on a shared ownership basis, helping local people like Rachel get a foot on the property ladder.

After contacting the sales team at Onward Living, Rachel found a delightful 3-bedroom mid-terrace plot and put down a £10,000 deposit for a 30% share on the £210,000 home.

The Rowan 3-bedroom home at Elston Park, Grimsargh

Rachel moved to Elston Park in May 2022 and is delighted to call Grimsargh home again.

“It is a lovely place to live,” says Rachel. “There’s a lot of great walks. I’ve got two dogs so I’m always out with them. We’re in the countryside but then 20 minutes down the road you’ve got Preston city centre, so it’s the perfect place really.

Grimsargh Village Green

“There’s a village green, a cricket ground, a great park for children, and two lovely pubs. We have an annual Field Day, which is like a carnival procession through the village, which is a lovely day. There’s even carol singing at Christmas. It’s just a really nice community.”

As well as falling in love with the location, Rachel is just as impressed with her new 3-bedroom home.

Rachel says: “When they told me they had a mid-terrace available I thought it was going to be a bit pokey and small, but I’m so surprised about how spacious it is. All the rooms are really bright and airy. Even the staircase and landing are really wide and there’s loads of space.

“The fixtures and fittings are also a top standard. Everything that’s in there I would have chosen myself, so I’m absolutely over the moon with it.”

It was the shared ownership scheme that helped Rachel secure a brand-new home in an area she wanted to live. Shared ownership is popular with first-time buyers who are looking to get on the property ladder, but it’s also an affordable option for those who are starting again after a change in circumstances.

Rachel in her new kitchen at Elston Park

With shared ownership you buy a percentage of the property (between 25% and 75%) and pay rent on the rest. Buying a percentage of a property means a smaller deposit and smaller mortgage. Plus, you can usually carry on buying more shares in your home so you own a greater percentage of it, up to 100%.

Rachel says: “It’s a brilliant concept for people like myself who couldn’t get a mortgage single-handedly. It was just because I was a single person. It’s just a great way for people to be able to get on the property ladder at an affordable rate as well.

“I also like the fact that when I renew my mortgage I can buy a bigger percentage of my home. It allows you to own more of your home so essentially you could own it outright. That’s a really good option for people.”

If Rachel’s story has inspired you to find out more about shared ownership, you can contact the Onward Living sales team on 0300 555 0130 or email sales@onward.co.uk

Fancy living the village life in Grimsargh? Take a look at our last remaining plot at Elston Park.

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