2. Can I Live? Transcript
Is owning a home a realistic dream for the average woman? With property prices in cities and prime locations rising. What used to be part of the package of growing up, may now be moving further and further away. Renay speaks with three women to hear their views on how things stand today.
To find out more about the UK Government's help to buy schemes visit their website HelpToBuy.Gov.UK
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[RENAY] Hey, you’re back! Welcome to another episode of That’s When You Get a Dog, the podcast BOWFOW, by old women for old women.
I want to thank you for listening and if you like what you hear, why not go and subscribe on your favourite podcast app and leave us a review, we’re on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Pocketcast and Castbox all the casts.
But enough of all that I know why you’re here you want your Ronnie fact. For the new listeners, Ronnie is my 3 and a half year old dog and each episode I will give you a little fact about him. This week, the Ronnie fact is he pretty much a vegetarian, his favourite foods are avocado, blueberries and pomegranate. Yes I have a bougie dog.
Despite the Ronnie fact’s this is not a show about dogs. Each episode over the series we will look at a key area that plays a big part in a woman’s life. So let’s drop our new anchor.
Can I Live… in a house I own?
That’s right, we’re talking about homeownership and whether it’s still possible nowadays if you’re not a millionaire.
Back before the financial crash of 07/08, it wasn’t so hard to buy property in fact the housing markets were booming worldwide. You had many options. Along with high street lenders there were independent lenders popping up left right and centre. You could forget about 20% minimum deposits as you could get a mortgage for 100% of the house or flat you wanted to buy. In some cases you could even borrow 110, 120% of the value. Crazy right.
So what exactly is a mortgage, according to google, a mortgage is a legal agreement by which a bank, building society, etc. lends money at interest in exchange for taking title of the debtor's property, with the condition that the conveyance of title becomes void upon the payment of the debt. Basically it’s a loan for the value of the place you want to buy and you make repayments monthly with interest the bank, the lender.
So imagine, there was a time you could get a mortgage for not only the value of your house but you could borrow more money, to decorate it, or go on holiday or basically whatever you wanted. These are the 100%+ mortgages I mentioned.
Anyway, those glory days are over and one of the things that led to the crash and now people find themselves renting for longer, living at home or with roommates for longer and home ownership now seems like a distant unachievable dream like, maybe one day I’ll take those flying lessons.
[SOPHIE] We have a development in Crouch End where I live which was an old town hall that has been bought by a developer called the Middle Eastern consortium and they have done a development of 190 new flats. And originally when it is development they put it in the council they hate it. They said that they didn't need to put any affordable housing in. Now I believe, not the law but the regulation and the the sort of processes that in London particularly if you build something new 25 percent of it has to be affordable housing and that was sort of what I think the mayor brought in to try and solve this problem. The problem with that is that apparently if a developer says that building the houses will cost more than he can sell them at an affordable price and he doesn't have to do it because technically he will not make a profit or not breakeven. So that's what the developers have gone in and said, the council Haringey Council have okayed that. People petitioned it, I petitioned it,I write to my MP and it's been reviewed and now they've agreed to of the 190 flats 11 of them will be affordable housing.
[RENAY] That’s the voice of Sophie, music executive and co-host of On The Shelf podcast, from London. Affordable housing is something we’ll get into later. I asked Sophie why she wants to buy a home.
[SOPHIE] I want to buy a house because it's something that's been instilled in me from my parents. Home ownership is a good way of investing and it's a security thing for your future. As much as I don't mind renting I don't feel necessarily protected when I rent. I've got friends who live in Europe and other places where they will rent all their lives because the government protects them and they have long leases and I feel like here in London particularly the rental market is quite fickle and even though I love where I live now at any point I could be thrown out and not have anywhere to live.
[RENAY] That’s true, I’ve had a couple rotten landlords, and you really don’t feel secure.
[SOPHIE] I've been looking for somewhere to buy for about two years. I'm on a few of the shared ownership lists if things do come up but I'm interested in I do inquire. It's been tough, you just look at things that come through and you see the prices and you just think as a single woman. It's just total madness.
[RENAY] Okay so what is shared ownership? Shared ownership is part of the UK government's affordable housing schemes and on their helptobuy.gov.uk website
If you can’t quite afford the mortgage on 100% of a home, Shared Ownership offers you the chance to buy a share of your home (between 25% and 75% of the home’s value) and pay rent on the remaining share. Later on, you could buy bigger shares when you can afford to.
Okay sounds good so far. To be eligible for shared ownership
your household earns £80,000 a year or less outside London, or earns £90,000 a year or less in London
you are a first-time buyer, you used to own a home but can’t afford to buy one now or are an existing shared owner looking to move.