top of page

Co-Ownership in Northern Ireland: Can it benefit you?

Homeownership is a dream cherished by many, yet the rising costs of property often place it out of reach for numerous individuals and families in Northern Ireland. Co-Ownership, a government-backed shared ownership scheme, offers an innovative solution to this challenge, providing a stepping stone towards owning a home. In this blog post, we delve into the benefits of Co-Ownership and how it can make the dream of owning a home a reality for more people.

Kempton Redman Law - Co-Ownership Blog

What is Co-Ownership?

Co-Ownership is a scheme designed to help people who cannot afford to buy a home outright. It allows individuals to purchase a share of a property, typically between 50% and 90%, while renting the remaining share from the Co-Ownership Housing Association. Over time, homeowners can buy additional shares in the property, a process known as staircasing, until they own the property outright.

Benefits of Co-Ownership


The most significant benefit of Co-Ownership is that it makes homeownership more affordable. By only needing a mortgage for a portion of the property's value, buyers can reduce their initial deposit and monthly mortgage payments. This is especially beneficial for first-time buyers who may struggle to save a substantial deposit.

Access to Better Properties

Co-Ownership can open doors to better-quality homes in desirable areas that might otherwise be out of reach. By sharing the ownership cost with the Co-Ownership Housing Association, buyers can consider properties in locations that offer better amenities, schools, and transport links, improving their quality of life.


The scheme provides significant flexibility. Buyers can choose the percentage of the property they wish to purchase initially, with the option to buy more shares in the future. This allows homeowners to increase their ownership stake as their financial situation improves, providing a tailored pathway to full ownership.

Kempton Redman Law - Co-Ownership Blog

Reduced Financial Risk

Co-Ownership reduces the financial risk associated with property ownership. If property values decrease, homeowners are only exposed to the value of their share, potentially mitigating financial loss. Additionally, because the Co-Ownership Housing Association holds an interest in the property, there is a shared incentive to maintain and enhance the property's value.

Support and Guidance

The Co-Ownership scheme offers extensive support and guidance throughout the buying process. This includes help with understanding the financial implications, navigating the mortgage application process, and completing the legal requirements. This support can be invaluable, particularly for first-time buyers who may find the property market daunting.

Stability and Security

Renting can often be an unstable option, with the risk of rent increases or landlord decisions to sell the property. Co-Ownership provides greater stability and security, allowing individuals and families to put down roots and plan for the future with the confidence that comes from having a long-term stake in their home.

How Does Co-Ownership Work?

Eligibility and Application

To benefit from Co-Ownership, applicants must meet certain eligibility criteria, which typically include income limits and the requirement to be a first-time buyer or not currently own a home. The application process involves an assessment of the applicant's financial situation to ensure they can afford the mortgage and rental payments.

Finding a Property

Once approved, buyers can choose a property on the open market, up to a specified value limit. The flexibility to select from a wide range of properties allows buyers to find a home that suits their needs and preferences.

Kempton Redman Law - Co-Ownership Blog

Purchasing a Share

Buyers purchase their share of the property with a mortgage from a participating lender. The remaining share is owned by the Co-Ownership Housing Association, and buyers pay a discounted rent on this share. This dual payment structure makes homeownership more accessible.


Over time, as financial circumstances improve, homeowners have the option to purchase additional shares in the property. This process, known as staircasing, can continue until the homeowner owns 100% of the property. Each staircasing transaction is subject to a new valuation of the property.

Selling the Property

If homeowners decide to sell the property, they can do so at any time. The proceeds from the sale are divided according to the ownership shares at the time of sale. This flexibility ensures that homeowners are not locked into the scheme indefinitely and can move as their needs change.


Co-Ownership in Northern Ireland provides an accessible, flexible, and supportive pathway to homeownership for those who might otherwise find it out of reach. By reducing the financial burden and offering a clear route to full ownership, Co-Ownership makes it possible for more people to enjoy the stability and security of owning their home. For anyone struggling to take their first step onto the property ladder, Co-Ownership offers a viable and attractive solution, opening the door to a brighter and more secure future.

If you're considering this route, seeking advice from a knowledgeable solicitor can help you navigate the process smoothly and ensure you make the most of this valuable opportunity or speak to a Mortgage Advisor who will also be able to advise on the process.

Are you approved and need a solicitor? Contact us today.


bottom of page