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Low Cost Home Ownership (LCHO) has received a major boost with buyers ...
Low Cost Home Ownership (LCHO) has received a major boost with buyers

overwhelmingly satisfied with their tenure.

In a comprehensive independent evaluation report carried out for the

Office of the deputy prime minister (see notes), more than 80 per

cent of shared ownership and Do-it-yourself shared ownership buyers

stated they were satisfied and over 90 per cent Homebuy purchasers

were satisfied and two thirds very satisfied with their form of


The research, launched at the National Housing Federation annual

conference in Birmingham, also found that LCHO schemes offered good

value for money for both the consumer and in terms of public subsidy.

Housing minister, Jeff Rooker, said the low cost ownership research

would go a long way towards helping inform the deputy prime

minister's longer-term vision for housing and sustainable


'Low cost home ownership schemes are vital in helping to tackle the

shortage of affordable homes. This evaluation will help shape our

long term programme of action to build sustainable communities and

provide homes people can afford.'

The report made a number of recommendations including a call for

strong championing and clear leadership of the LCHO programme both

from government and other organisations as well as better targeting

towards regions where there is the most need and demand.


1. The research was carried out by Glen Bramley and Jimmy Morgan from

the School of the Built Environment, Heriot-Watt University Edinburgh

in partnership with Lin Counsins and Kathleen Dunmore from Three

Dragons consultancy and MORI social research.

2. The government has been providing low cost home ownership since

the 1980's. The broad aims of the programme are to:

- Providing opportunities for households, who would not otherwise be

able to afford it, to enjoy the benefits of owner occupation where

this can be sustained

- Meeting pressing housing need, particularly homelessness, both

directly and also indirectly, through the release of units of

accommodation in the social rented sector

- Supporting and contributing to urban regeneration

- Creating more socially mixed and balanced communities

- Providing affordable housing opportunities for 'key workers'

required to deliver essential public services in pressured areas.

3. The LCHO programme is currently made up of Conventional Shared

Ownership (CSO), Do-it-yourself-Shared Ownership (DIYSO), and

Homebuy. In both CSO and DIYSO a customer will buy an equity share in

a property (usually from 25 per cent to 75 per cent) and rents the

remainder from an RSL. With DIYSO the customer buys a new or second

hand dwelling on the open market, whereas CSO generally involves the

supplier, normally an RSL, building a new property and therefore

increases the supply of housing. Homebuy is a form of equity loan

where part of the initial purchase cost of a property is met by an

RSL and treated as an interest free loan.

4. An electronic copy of the summary of the report can be downloaded

here. For a copy of the full report priced at£40.00, contact:

Housing Support Unit

Office of the Deputy Prime Minister

2/C6, Eland House

Bressenden Place

London SW1E 5DU

Public Enquiries: 020 7944 4400

Fax: 020 7944 4527


Office of the deputy prime minister website:

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