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Wilson picks Metropolitan’s Roseberry Street

Wilson picks shared ownership from Metropolitan at Roseberry Street

Architect Wilson Yu and his partner, Yen Leung were renting a flat in the Surrey Quays area of London. Wilson had sold a property and was going to buy another one when the market surged and he found it impossible to get a mortgage with his bank. The search for a property became more urgent as Yen was pregnant .

Wilson was not particularly keen on going down the shared ownership route initially as he had seen some developments built by other Housing Associations and developers and he was not impressed with their architectural design and internal specification.

He soon realised that it was the only way he was going to afford anything in the area he was living. He registered with the FIRST STEPS website, which lists all shared ownership homes available in London. He then registered with all the individual Housing Associations and Metropolitan’s Homematch service as well so that he had all the up to date information on homes available to buy from them.

Wilson had lived in the area for quite a while and had a lot of friends nearby so he decided to concentrate his search locally. He found the process of trying to book viewings on Resales very frustrating as they were usually fully booked by the time he rang the vendor so he decided to concentrate on new build homes, which led him to receiving information about Metropolitan’s Roseberry Street development.

Roseberry Street, set in a leafy, established residential area near South Bermondsey with excellent transport connections to central London, offered Londoners a rare opportunity to buy larger, family sized homes at a small development of eight apartments and four houses available through shared ownership. Wilson explains the buying process:

“I was sent an advert for this development by Metropolitan and I decided to take a look as it was in the right area. I had a telephone interview to check that I was suitable financially and arranged a viewing. There was only a show home available as they were still building at the time, the sales staff were really helpful and advised me to go for a three-bedroom house. We decided that it was ideal for us and put down a deposit and arranged for an in-depth financial interview. This was very long but meant that the mortgage adviser had all the information he needed to process our mortgage application. It also gave us a good idea of all the costs involved in owning the house.

We received our offer letter at the end of September and moved in in November. The house is terraced and has a garden and a front parking area as well. There are three bedrooms with a family bathroom, an ensuite and a downstairs toilet, which has been designed to be converted into a shower room when we get old and infirm! Although there is plenty of space, it mainly seems to be taken up with baby clutter at the moment!”

Affordability-wise, shared ownership compared favourably to alternatives locally, with market research organisation Hometrack reporting that three-bedroom properties rent for over £2000 per month and that the cost of buying an average new build equates to almost £3400 per month in the London Borough of Southwark. Wilson looked at the monthly costs he was taking on:

“The full market value of the three-bedroom home was £550,000 and we bought a 40% share, which equates to a mortgage of £220,000. This means with rent, service charge, and mortgage payments we pay out around  £1800 a month. If you consider a two-bedroom flat in this area rents for around £1600 a month this seems pretty good value.”

Buying a home at Roseberry Street has enabled the young family to settle down quickly and make plans for the future, Wilson continues:

“Having an eight month old child seems to take up all of our time and even though we moved in November we still haven’t unpacked all our boxes yet. The  spare room is full of flat-pack furniture waiting to be built. In previous flats I have had to do repairs as soon as we move in but it’s lovely that everything is new and working.

Bermondsey is really changing rapidly now for the better and we intend to stay here for a while to enjoy it. This is the first time that I have contemplated ‘staying put’ for years.”

We asked Wilson what advice he would give to Londoners considering buying with shared ownership, his response was unequivocal:

“If you are contemplating shared ownership it is virtually the only way you will be able to live in London at an affordable rate now, so don’t delay!”

WilsonYuPC4 4839
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