Existing shared owners

Subletting

As part of our policy on preventing repossession of shared ownership properties, we aim to help shared owners maximise their income, we also recognise that sometimes a shared owners circumstances may change beyond their control requiring them to move at a time when they have been unsuccessful in selling their home for a period of six months. One of the ways in which we can assist our shared ownership customers through these circumstances is by allowing a shared owner to sublet their property for a limited period of time.  The initial period considered will be up to 12 months and timescales will be reviewed on a case by case basis

All shared ownership leases contain a provision requiring the tenant and his family to be the only occupiers; this is on the basis that shared ownership houses fall within the definition of affordable housing.

Procedure in cases of financial hardship

Applications for permission to sublet should be considered on a case by case basis and subject to the following procedural checklist:

  • The shared ownership tenant will be required to put forward their case for being permitted to underlet.  They will need to include financial details of their income and expenditure.  YHG will require evidence of this.
     
  • A financial viability/affordability assessment will be made by our Financial Inclusion Officer.
     
  • YHG will need to be satisfied that the tenant has maximised their income through welfare and benefits available.
     
  • YHG will request proof of a previous attempt to sell the property and/or other circumstances that have led to the request (we will expect to see a proof that the property has been on the market for a period of at least six months in an attept to sell it).
     
  • Subletting must improve their current financial situation and avoid repossession.  YHG will set out what will be achieved by subletting the property for the given time period.

Once the matter has been fully investigated a summary report will be produced to confirm details of the investigation.

Procedure in all other cases

We will consider applications to sublet for reasons other than financial hardship, for example if a shared owner is moving for work commitments.  These will be determined on a case by case basis and will be subject to the same conditions and approval process as set out below.  Each applicant will be required to provide us with financial information to show that they will not be profiting from the arrangement. 

  • The shared ownership tenant will be required to put forward their case for being permitted to underlet.  They will need to include financial details of their income and expenditure.  YHG will require evidence of this.
  • Any subletting will be by way of an assured shorthold tenancy (AST) only and YHG will need to approve the tenancy agreement.  The AST must refer to the shared ownership lease.
  • YHG will request proof of a previous attempt to sell the property and/or other circumstances that have led to the request (we will expect to see a proof that the property has been on the market for a period of at least six months in an attept to sell it).

Conditions attached to permission

Conditions that may be applied to permission when granted (this list is not exhaustive):

  • YHG reserve the right to require the use of a letting agent to arrange and/or manage the underlet.
  • YHG reserve the right to require the rent to be paid directly against the shared owners rent account.
     
  • The permission will be subject to a 6 month review of the shared owners financial position and can be withdrawn at any time (subject to notice periods contained in the AST).
     
  • YHG can require a shared owner to enter into a deed of variation to reflect that the permission has been granted, the shared owner is to bear the cost of this.

Approval

Each new application will be considered by the Head of Home Ownership and Sales and the Shared Ownership Coordinator for joint approval.  Any application to extend the initial 12 month period will be agreed by the Customer Experience Manager and the Head of Home Ownership and Sales.

Following approval we will write to the applicant to confirm the outcome and if approved what conditions have been applied.  A six month review appointment will also be booked.

Please contact us on 01935 404500 or email leasehold@yhg.co.uk  for further information.

 
Contact our sales team on 01935 404006 or email shared.ownership@yhg.co.uk