Your journey to Home Ownership! FAQ's

Here's what to expect during your
Shared Ownership Journey with Metro

Before you reserve your home,
affordability etc

As Shared ownership is a Government backed scheme, there are strict criteria relating to who can purchase a property and as part of this, all potential buyers need to pass an affordability assessment to ensure sustainability.

One of the Government rules for Shared Ownership is to buy the maximum share, this is to ensure best use of public funds. And it makes good sense, you’ll pay less rent on the remaining shares.

You can call us or use our live online system by clicking 'Affordability Assessment'.

We can work out what you can afford, give you all the costs etc without documents. If you decide to proceed then you'll need to upload documents see our Document FAQ's for more help

You’ll need to know the income for all applicants and monthly outgoings like loans, cards, car finance etc. Ideally, you’d have your payslips or self employed paperwork to hand, being super accurate on day one, helps make the journey smoother.

The minimum is 5% of the share value

One of the Government Shared Ownership rules is that you should maximise the use of your savings/ deposit. But this doesn’t necessarily mean everything, you can keep reasonable amounts back for other things.

We’ll always work with you to try and make it work. If initially it doesn’t look affordable, where possible we’ll suggests changes that could make it affordable. The good thing about Shared Ownership is its flexibility, adjusting the share size to suit affordability.

Of course not, we hope you’ll like us, but you are free to go to anywhere.

Never, and we never have charged. And recently it has become one of the rules of Shared Ownership. Wherever you go for your assessment, it should be free.

MORTGAGES, AIP's, Offers etc

Apart from the fact it’s named a ‘Shared Ownership Mortgage’ it’s the same as any other mortgage. They come in all different shapes and forms, like fixed rates, variable rates, flexi feature etc. It’s basically a legal agreement between you and the bank, the bank takes your new home as security until the money is repaid.

This is when the lender credit searches the applicants, checks it’s affordable and meets basic criteria. They’re effectively saying ‘We’ll lend to you, but first you’ll need to prove certain things, like income level, outgoings etc etc, which is called ‘underwriting’

Yes! Starting with its initials DIP, also Agreement in Principle AIP, also Mortgage In Principle MIP, also Mortgage Certificate

This is when the lender is carrying out their checks on your documents, making sure everything meets their criteria and is as you told them at application stage.

This is the goal of the mortgage process, the Mortgage Offer is the legal agreement between you and the lender. Once this is produced, it’s then just down to the solicitors to get things completed.

This varies widely between lenders, with some fast lenders it can be done in 5 days, with slower lenders it could take 30-40 days, occasionally longer. Lenders usually have service levels, however these are variable dependent on the volumes they are receiving. We monitor the average speed of lenders so we can factor this into the Advice we give you.

There are roughly 28 Shared Ownership lenders, and the best depends on the individual. The best for me, may not be the best for you. Because each lender structures their products to target markets.

Most, but not all, usually require your last 3 months bank statements

Credit scoring is different than credit searching. Scoring is when the lender has designed a special scoring profile, where you’ll need to meet/hit that scoring profile for them to lend. Whereas some lenders simply credit search and don’t take into account any score or points.

The job of the Mortgage Adviser is to find a lender that meets your requirements and circumstances. So, if one lender declines to lend, it does not mean that all lenders will decline. The Adviser will aim to find one that will lend.

This is where your mortgage payments will stay exactly the same for a period of time. It’s usually set at Two, three or Five years. You’d select the period with the help of the mortgage Adviser, usually the longer you fix for the more it costs, because you’re buying that extra piece of mind.

This is a crucial part of the mortgage advice process, the Adviser will ask questions about your plans/life etc and together you’ll work out the most appropriate fixed length.

This is where your mortgage payments can go up or down each month, you don’t have the security of knowing your budget each month with this type of mortgage. However, this type of mortgage can sometimes come with no tie ins at all. Unlike the fixed rate, where you are usually tied in for the fixed rate period.

Not necessarily, you can obtain a mortgage by a method called ‘Execution Only’. But this does mean if you get it wrong and the mortgage isn’t totally suitable you’ll have less power to complain, because you called the shots, not the Adviser.

You need a solicitor to deal with all the legal requirements of buying a home, such as registering the deeds and checking the land registry. We can arrange for one of our panel solicitors who are shared ownership specialists to send you a quote, it’s usually between £995-£1600 excluding any stamp duty if applicable. All mortgage lenders require the use of a solicitor.

After you've reserved your dream home

If you’re using Metro for your mortgage, we’ll keep you updated all the way, by phone and tracking in your customer portal. The goal is to obtain your formal Mortgage Offer quickly, to do this, the mortgage goes through a lender underwriting process and external valuation of the property.

The property will have been valued by the Housing Association, but the lender will always require their own valuation to ensure they agree with the market value. It is standard procedure and happens on all mortgage applications whether they are shared ownership properties or other buying schemes.

Once the lender issues the mortgage offer, we will be in touch with you to give you the good news! A copy will go to your solicitor who will then take over the process to completion of the purchase and the end of your purchase journey!

Document FAQs

Shared Ownership is regulated product, Housing Associations require an affordability sign off evidenced by documentation etc. Metro does this on behalf of the Housing Association, builder or agent. We do it digitally and try to make it as easy as possible for you.

Generally, it’s the documents listed below

  1. Last 3 months payslips (or Tax Overviews for self-employed)
  2. Last 3 months bank statements
  3. Evidence of deposit and audit trail of funds
  4. Gifted deposit letters (if gifted to you)
  5. Proof of address
  6. Passport or Driving Licence using our online facial recognition checker

All documents should be in PDF format.

Unfortunately not, the documents need to PDF scan types or saved/printed to PDF.

It needs to be the last 3 months, with the latest being the month that has just ended. And it’s really important no dates/pages are missing as this will cause delays for you.

Usually, the Housing Provider will set the deadline, 5 days is fairly normal. We think it’s important to do it quicker than 5 days, so you don’t risk losing your dream home to someone else. It’s not abnormal to have 4 to 6 potential buyers per property with Shared Ownership.

For deposit, it’s a legal requirement under Anti Money Laundering Regulations, for us to verify the source of your funds. If your deposit has been in your account less than 6 months, generally you’ll need to also supply the account it came from.

If you haven’t saved the money over a period of months/years, it is likely to be classed as gifted. For example, if a parent gave you money 12 months ago, even though it’s been sat in your account since, it’s still gifted. This would mean we’d need the gift letter (we’ll supply) and the bank statement showing the original source.

Absolutely definitely yes, we want you to do this. It’s especially important for deposits, with so many variations in savings types, the ease of transferring money to multiple accounts. We can talk through on the phone what you’ll need. First time right is always best. Call us on 0114 270144

Yes of course. We inform them at the same time we inform you to ensure there are no delays.

Mortgage Lenders have their own underwriting requirements and will need verification over and above the basic requirements of the Housing Association.

Because we play by the book we want to tell you that…

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage. There may be a fee for mortgage advice of up to 1% of the amount borrowed. A typical fee is £499, but this will depend upon your circumstances.

Metro Finance is a trading name of Metro Finance Brokers Limited which is an appointed representative of Mortgage Advice Bureau Limited and Mortgage Advice Bureau (Derby) Limited which are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Metro Finance Brokers Limited. Registered of Office: 68 Pullman Road, Wigston, England, LE18 2DB. Registered in England No. 04998736

For more help call us on 0114 2701444

For more help call us on 0114 2701444