Affordable home ownership couldn’t get much better for the Woollards

Nicholas and Miranda Woollard knew they had found the perfect affordable house to buy when they spotted their beautiful new two-bedroom Stonewater home for just under £85,000 in Seagrave Park, Sileby, near Loughborough.

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The couple were looking to downsize from a three-bedroom home in a nearby village after Nicholas became ill and had to stop working.

“With only my wife’s income supporting us, we were struggling to afford the high mortgage payments on the house we were living in. It made sense to find a more affordable place to live and lower our monthly payments, but it had to be the right place,” explains Nicholas.

Low-cost shared ownership

The Woollard’s smart new house in Seagrave Park is part of Stonewater Homes’ development of nine two- and three- bedroom homes for low-cost shared ownership in Seagrave Park.

Nicholas explains: “It was exactly the type of village property we were looking for. The location was just perfect for us – close to shops, the train station and local services – and the cost of shared ownership was much more affordable.

Stonewater’s shared ownership scheme offers buyers like Nicholas and Miranda the opportunity to purchase a 40 to 75 per cent share in their homes based on what is affordable and pay a reduced rent on the remaining share. They also have the option to increase or ‘staircase’ their ownership in the future until they own their house outright.

“Our Stonewater home was on the market for under £170,000 and we bought a 50% share in it,” explains Nicholas. “As we had a little money left over from the sale of our old property, we didn’t need another mortgage as the new Stonewater home is more affordable for us and is the perfect solution. We now have lower payments going out and the rent and service charge is a lot more affordable than our previous monthly mortgage costs.”

Quick and easy process

It took seven weeks for the Woollards to complete on their new home from first seeing the property to moving in.

“The purchase process was quick and easy,” says Nicholas. “Jo, our Stonewater Sales Coordinator was absolutely brilliant. She was in contact every couple of days and chased things up for us. We had no problem getting hold of her and she helped us every step of the way. We couldn’t have asked for anyone better!”

The Woollards’ two-bedroom home is part of a small community of affordable Stonewater homes in Seagrave Park which have been sensitively designed in keeping with Sileby village’s rural setting.

“Although new, this housing development has a country village ‘lived-in’ feel and our neighbours are great!”, says Nicholas. “I love the layout of our house. We have a separate fitted kitchen with plenty of cupboard space and a spacious living room with patio doors that open onto a good-sized private back garden. We have two good bedrooms upstairs and a bathroom which is great.”

The couple’s house has also been designed for maximum energy efficiency to keep their heating bills down and the property has two parking spaces. “It’s everything you could ask for – it’s perfect!”, says Nicholas.

“The great thing about shared ownership is that it doesn’t tie all your money up in a house – you can put more money into it as your financial situation improves,” says Nicholas. “I’d recommend it to anyone in our position who needs to downsize their home or who doesn’t want to take on a massive mortgage. It’s also great for a young person who wants to get on the property ladder and has a little money to invest. I’ve actually recommended Stonewater’s shared ownership scheme to a friend of mine’s son who’s in the Armed Forces.

“For my wife and I, shared ownership has been the ideal solution. We absolutely love this house. It’s ideal for us and it’s really affordable living!”

For more information on Stonewater Homes, please visit www.stonewaterhomes.co.uk or call 023 8065 8858.