STAIRCASING. To qualify for a shared ownership property you must meet the following minimum criteria:

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1 STAIRCASING FAQ s Am I eligible? To qualify for a shared ownership property you must meet the following minimum criteria: Your maximum household income is 80,000. In London, the maximum household income is 90,000 per annum. You are unable to afford to purchase a suitable home on the open market You do not already own a home or will have sold your current home before you buy. What is Staircasing? Staircasing is the process where you buy additional shares in your Shared Ownership home. Once you buy shares up to 100%, you will own your home outright subject to any legal charge. If you decide to sell your home, the more percentage you own, the more profit you will make if the value of your home has increased. If you elect to staircase in the future, your rent payments will be reduced as you will only continue to pay rent on the share you do not own. How many times can I staircase? A maximum of three times. The third time must take you up to 100% ownership. The minimum share you can purchase will be in your lease though it is normally 10% or 20%. However, if it is the final share, it may be less than the minimum share in order for you to staircase up to 100%. Do I have to staircase? No, this decision is up to you. A lot of people who live in Shared Ownership properties choose to buy extra shares in their home in order to reduce their rent. What about mortgage? You will need to contact your mortgage lender if you will be increasing your mortgage in order to staircase. This is known as a further advance. If you want to move your mortgage to a new lender, perhaps for a better interest rate, this is known as remortgaging. Wandle can provide you with details of independent financial advisors who have specialist knowledge of Shared Ownership and the lenders you can apply to, if required.

2 Do I need to contact a Solicitor? Yes, you are advised to appoint a solicitor to act on your behalf in connection with your staircasing transaction. If you are remortgaging or taking out a further advance as part of the process, your lender will insist upon it. You will be responsible for your solicitors fees, which your solicitor will be able to advise you on. You will also need to provide Wandle with the name, address and telephone number of the solicitor who will be acting on your behalf in this transaction. What costs are involved? Apart from the price for the additional share, there will also be valuation fees, legal fees, mortgage arrangements & associated fees and stamp duty (if applicable). How do I staircase with Wandle? Permission by Wandle will only be given for a staircasing transaction provided your rent and service charge accounts are up to date. You must complete the staircasing instruction form and return to the Sales team at the address given on the form. Once Wandle have confirmed receipt of the staircasing instruction form, you will need to arrange a current open market RICS valuation survey report of the property. Wandle has a list of recommended surveyors who are all RICS (Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors) registered that you may use. The charge for the valuation report from these surveyors is between (including VAT). Please contact the Sales team should you wish to choose one of these. You may choose your own RICS surveyor if you prefer. Please note that the surveyor should be independent of any estate agency or lending organisation (e.g. bank/building society), and qualified as FRICS or MRICS. Wandle carry out checks on valuations received and if required, the association will organise for another valuation to be carried out at Wandle s cost. If a value cannot be agreed between the two parties, the parties will need to apply to the president of the RICs to appoint a surveyor to complete another open market valuation report. The cost will be split between Wandle and yourself. The value provided from the RICs will be the valuation amount used. Valuations accepted by Wandle are valid for three months from the valuation date. If you do not buy the extra share in your home in this time, your home will have to be re-valued. This is usually at a reduced rate as the surveyor who carried out the original inspection will not need to revisit your home. Please note that if the value has increased in the mean time, it will be more expensive to buy your extra share. The final percentage due to Wandle for the share you are acquiring is based on the relevant share of the agreed open market value as confirmed by the surveyor. What happens if I staircase to 100%?

3 Once you own 100% of your home, you ll no longer pay any rent to Wandle. However, you will still have to pay your service charges as well as ground rent (if applicable) unless the property is a house. The freehold of your home can be transferred to you when you have staircased to 100%. This is only if you own a house rather than an apartment in a communal block. Once the transfer has taken place, you will no longer have to pay the buildings insurance portion of your service charge although you will have to take out your own buildings insurance policy. However, you may still have to pay a service charge to Wandle or a management company if you live in a communal development where there are privately maintained services used by you. Can I sell my home? If you own less than 100% of your home, Wandle can nominate prospective buyers and restrict the sale price to the valuation given by an independent surveyor. However, once you own 100% you ll be free to sell your home on the open market. I have a question that has not be answered above Please contact Wandle s Sales Team on or us at

4 Recommended Surveyors 1) Frazers Surveyors Ltd Website: 2) MAP Chartered Surveyors Website: 3) Gardner Patnership

5 Staircasing Instruction Form Property Address Date originally Purchased... Original full market value Original Percentage purchased % Original purchase Price... Current Percentage owned (if different from above)..% I/we wish to staircase to/up to % (this is subject to the terms of the lease) What changes to your circumstances are enabling you to buy more shares?.... I / We are aware that we will need to pay legal fees and associated administration costs agreed during the process. I/We understand that our rent and service charge account must be kept up to date during the staircasing process and failure to do so may result in our application being delayed. If your property was purchased initially in joint names please ensure that both people sign this form. Telephone Number Address (if different from above)......

6 Signed. Purchaser s Full Legal Name.. Signed.. Purchaser s Full Legal Name Solicitors Details. Name.... Address Telephone number..... Reference / Name of person dealing with your staircasing Date The information which you supply us will be treated confidentially and only used to process your Staircasing application. We may share this information with our solicitors but only in relation to your staircasing transaction. Please sign: I understand that you will use the information I have provided to process my sales/resale/staircasing application. This may include sharing information about me with certain other organisations including Wandle s solicitors. Please return completed form to: Sales and Marketing Team, Wandle Housing Association Limited, 2nd Floor Minerva House, Montague Close, London SE1 9BB

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