Frequently Asked Questions

How much can I buy?

You can buy any share from 25% to 75% of the property. Your cash deposit will always need to be at least 25% of the market value of the property, but if you wish to, you can buy a larger share with either cash or a Shared Ownership Mortgage provided by a lender.


You retain the right to purchase more of the property at any time, a process known as "staircasing". Because you will have to get the property re-valued and instruct solicitors, we don't recommend staircasing in small increments.


However, if your property value has gone up when you staircase, you are entitled to a discount of 50% of the uplift in price, proportional to the share percentage you are buying. 

Can I buy any property?

With Your Home, you can buy any property valued up to £600,000 as long as it's a freehold property of traditional construction that has been previously occupied. The property must be immediately habitable and sold on the open market. 


Looking for new build homes? Check out Home Reach by heylo.

Do I qualify if I already own a property?

Yes, you do. Our product is available to anyone looking to purchase a property, whether you are a first time buyer or not.


However, the Your Home property you buy must become your main and only residence, so if you are an existing home owner you must be selling it on completion, and you can't own any other properties while you live in your shared ownership purchase. 

How much does your service cost?

First off, you will need a minimum 25% cash deposit. This money goes entirely towards funding your share of ownership.


Then, Your Home carries a product fee of £1,100 (+VAT) – this will cover the cost of processing your application, conveyancing searches including Local Authority, Environmental, Drainage and Water, as well as our solicitor fees.


You will have to cover your own solicitor costs, and depending on the property you buy there might be a requirement to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax. All of these potential costs will be detailed for you throughout the process but our suggestion is that you set aside £3,500 for total costs, including our own fee.

How much will rent be?

The part-rent share of your property will require payment monthly in advance, starting at 4.89% per year of the value of the share you don't own, and increasing yearly by 0.50% plus the Retail Price Index (RPI). If the RPI is zero or negative your rent will increase by 0.50%.

Can I take out a personal loan to pay for costs or fund part of my deposit?

Yes, provided that this is an unsecured loan. You will need to tell us about this as part of the application process, and we will take it into account (alongside any other credit accounts and loan repayments) as part of your affordability assessment.

Do I have to organise a RICS Valuation Report?

We will carry our own valuation of the property, so you are not required to order and pay for your own.


However, we recommend as with any house purchase that you instruct an independent RICS-chartered surveyor to go out to the property and perform a valuation. The surveyor will need to send a copy of this report to both yourself and the Your Home team, so you can read through it and make sure you are happy with the condition and valuation of the property.

What happens if the valuation is less than the price I offered (down-valued) ?

If this happens you have a choice, you can try and negotiate with the seller to reduce the price or, if you choose, you can abort the process with this property and continue your search.


Whatever your decision, the Your Home team is available to guide you regarding next steps.

Which solicitor should I use to buy my share?

We have a panel of solicitors that you can choose from. They have been selected for their excellent customer service, value for money and their understanding of Your Home and shared ownership purchases. You will be in good hands to ensure the house buying process is smooth and stress-free.


It is always good to ask the estate agents whether the property is part of a "chain" purchase, where the seller is in turn buying another property, and if so what the chain is and the timing expectations. 

If I change my mind at any time, can I withdraw from the process?

Yes, of course.


Until contracts are exchanged you are not legally bound to the purchase so you are free to change your mind. However, we would strongly recommend that you think of any reasons why you may not want to proceed before starting the process as any product fees are non-refundable if you withdraw.

What is staircasing?

Staircasing is when you increase the share that you own in your home. If you increase your share in the property, the amount of rent you pay is re-calculated and reduced accordingly.

What is a RICS Standard Valuation Report?

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) is the world's leading professional body for qualifications and standards in land, property, infrastructure and construction. The report will tell you about the construction characteristics of the property as well as the valuation. Although the price of it will vary depending on the value of the property they typically cost £200 to £500, with payment made at the point of instruction.

What are the legal fees and associated costs?

As part of the purchase of your share, you will need to instruct a solicitor to act on your behalf. We recommend choosing from our list of approved solicitors who already have a thorough understanding of Your Home, but you can always choose your own solicitor. Reach out to one of our property specialists if you need advice on how to choose.


In addition to their fee, they will also charge for disbursements (third party costs) such as Land Registry fees, search fees, etc. – our approved solicitors will always clearly outline and agree all these costs in advance, so there's no surprises. Your solicitor will also be able to advise you on the cost of any Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) payable.

Are there any other ongoing costs, in addition to my rent?

In addition to your rent, the Your Home lease requires payment of a monthly management fee ( £17.97 from 1st April 2022 including VAT) as well as buildings insurance. When you complete on your purchase, you will need to pay all costs for the remainder of the month in which you complete, together with the following month. Your solicitor will let you know in advance how much this will be.

Who is responsible for the upkeep of the property?

You will be responsible for the upkeep of your property, as well as any third party service charges associated with cleaning, lightning, and maintenance of communal areas such as parking and shared gardens or un-adopted roadways. You will need to request full information on the services and the estimated costs from the property seller before you decide to move forward with the purchase as these will have to be included in our affordability assessment.

What is the Your Home lease?

The lease is a legal agreement that details what is expected of all parties and has been created from a standard industry form, but adapted to give you the benefits of Your Home.

Who has the repair obligations?

Like with any shared ownership lease, Your Home leases are "full repairing" leases. This means that as a leaseholder and home owner you are responsible for the costs of all repairs and maintenance both internal and external.

Who is responsible for building and contents insurance?

The Your Home lease specifies that, unless otherwise agreed by heylo, we will insure the building (through a bulk policy) leaving you to insure your contents. Given that heylo insures thousands of properties you will benefit from a bulk discount making this policy very competitive compared to a policy you would purchase as an individual. The cost of this insurance will be collected each month alongside rent.

What is the Retail Price Index (RPI) ?

The RPI is the official measure of the general level of inflation as reflected in the retail price of a basket of goods, and services such as energy, food, gasoline (petrol), housing, household goods, travelling fare, etc. It is commonly computed on a monthly basis, but an annual rate is also published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) which serves as a yardstick for adjusting inflation-indexed salaries and wages, tax allowances, pensions and rents.

What is the Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) ?

Stamp Duty Land Tax is a fee generally payable on the purchase or transfer of property or land in the UK, including leasehold and shared ownership transactions, whenever the amount paid or value of rent payable is above a certain threshold. These transactions must be notified to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) on a Stamp Duty Land Tax return within a certain time – even if no tax is due – and your solicitor will be able to do this for you.


If SDLT is due on your purchase, it will need to be paid on completion to HMRC.

How do I work out my household income?

Household income is the combined gross income of all applicants who are of legal working age and are ultimately going to be residing on, and owning a share of, a Your Home property.


There is a maximum of 2 applicants per application, however, they do not have to be related in any way to be considered members of the same household. Household income is an important measure used by heylo to determine affordability.

How do I buy a bigger share?

The Your Home lease outlines the process that allows you to buy a bigger share at any time ("staircasing"). Like with the initial purchase, a valuation will need to be undertaken and used in a calculation specified in the lease that works out how much you will need to pay based on how big a share you wish to buy. As well as the valuation costs, buying a bigger share will also involve legal fees and may require a Stamp Duty Land Tax payment.

What if I want to move home?

The Your Home lease outlines the process to allow you to sell your property outright and your entitlement to sale proceeds. Like with the initial purchase, an independent valuation will need to be undertaken. When you sell outright, the actual sale price will be used in a calculation specified on the lease to work out how much you will receive based on how big your initial share purchase was.

What if I pay the fee and the purchase does not go through?

Your application approval is valid for 60 days so you would be able to find another property within that timeframe. After this, you would need to refresh your application every 60 days until you find a property.

Is there a minimum additional amount if I want to buy a bigger share of my home?

You can buy more of Your Home at any time. There is no minimum amount, however, as you will be buying more property there will be associated costs (which could be the same as the initial costs if the additional share is funded with a mortgage) and therefore small additional % amounts may have disproportionately large costs.

Can I use Your Home again on my next home if I want to move?

Of course! Your Home is available to any buyer or mover. You will need to start a new application for a lease on your next property.

Do you have a credit criteria?

To be eligible to purchase a property using the Your Home scheme, you will need to meet our credit criteria. On completion of an application, both primary and secondary (if applicable) will undergo a hard credit. Click here to read our full credit policy. 

How many times can I staircase?

You can staircase as many times as you want. Please refer to your lease for minimum staircasing increments.

Is there a minimum time I have to wait before staircasing?

You can staircase at any time of your choosing.

What will happen to my rent when I staircase?

When you staircase, your rent will fall in line with your new share ownership, as you only pay rent on the share of the property you don’t own. If you staircase to 100%, you will no longer need to pay rent.

How long does the staircasing process take?

Once heylo’s solicitors have been instructed, the process will take approximately 6-8 weeks*. 


*Arranging a valuation and mortgage discussions (if applicable) not included within this timeframe.

When you own 100% what happens?

You will no longer pay heylo any rent and the freehold will be transferred to you when you have staircase to 100%.

How do I apply to staircase on my property?

You can download our application to staircase form to buy more shares in your property here. You will need to send your completed form and RICs valuation to [email protected]

Where can I find out more about staircasing on my home?

You can find out more about staircasing on your Your Home property here.

Where can I find out more about selling my home?

You can find out more about selling your Your Home property here.

How do I apply to sell my property?

You can download our resale application form to sell your property hereYou will need to send your completed form and supported documents requested to [email protected].

What is the heylo resale fee?

Admin Fee (purchaser found by heylo in nominations period) - £1,000 +VAT 

Admin Fee (purchaser found outside of nominations period) - £450 +VAT. 


This fee will be collected on completion.

Can I sell my share on the open market?

Only once the nominations period has passed without heylo finding a purchaser, you have the option to instruct a local estate agent to market the property on the open market. The agent can market your share, or the entire property, unless restrictions on the share that can be marketed are stated in your lease.

I bought my house with appliances included and I am now selling, do I have to leave these in the house for the new owner?

You will need to complete a fixtures and fittings form (TA10) this will be shared with the new buyer by your solicitor and will lay out which fixtures and fittings will be left for the new buyer when you vacate the property. 

What is the nominations period when selling my home?

The nominations period forms part of the lease as outlined in the Capital Funding Guide. It sets out that heylo, as the landlord has the right to market your property, or your shares in your home, usually for an eight-week period. During this time, you cannot place your property, or shares, on the open market through an estate agent. 

If you have staircased to 100 per cent ownership, no nominations period applies. Details about the length of your nominations period can be found in section 3.20.4 under “DEFINITIONS AND INTERPRETATION”. 

Buyers found during the nominations period must meet the standard criteria for purchasing a part buy – part rent property as set out by Homes England.
Are there any restrictions on reselling?

Yes, restrictions can include:

  • A longer nominations period (consult your shared ownership lease)
  • Marketing strategies (e.g. marketing via a local newspaper)
  • Purchaser specifications (governed by your local council, more information can be found in your Section 106 Agreement)
What happens if I change my mind and don’t want to sell?

By removing your property from the market during the nominations period, you will have to pay an early removal fee. 
The following fees apply:
  • Before a buyer has been sold - £350 +VAT
  • During the sale process - £950 +VAT
  • Outside the nominations period – no fee

Eligibility criteria for potential buyers – 

  • Buyers must be at least 18 years old
  • Buyers must have a total household income under £80,000 (£90,000 in London)
  • Buyers must meet the Homes England affordability and sustainability assessments (see the Homes England calculator guidance for further information)
  • Buyers are expected to use any savings and assets towards the purchase of their home. This may mean selling assets such as bonds, shares, land and any other financial investments
  • Buyers in receipt of benefits are eligible for part buy – part rent provided they meet the Homes England affordability assessment
  • Self-employed buyers must be able to provide 2-years evidence of their income
  • Buyers must purchase the maximum share they can reasonably afford within the parameters of the Homes England calculator
  • Shared owners must be first time buyers or:
    • Not currently own a home suitable for their housing needs
    • Sell a home not suitable for their housing needs before buying part buy – part rent
    • Own a non-residential property that provides their main income source

  • Buyers must have good credit history (for more information on our credit criteria, please visit heylohousing.com)
  • Buyers must have a minimum 5% deposit towards the share they are purchasing
  • Buyers may retain a portion of their savings to cover the costs of purchase and moving home (typically up to £5,000). This may include:
    • Legal fees

If you are selling when you have reached 100 per cent ownership, there is no criteria you need to fulfil before making a sale.