Buying your first home

If you are thinking of buying your first home there are a number of things you will need to consider.

You will need a deposit of at least 10% of the total purchase price. You will need to have savings that cover the costs of solicitors and other fees such as stamp duty.

The government has lots of different ways to help first time buyers which can be found on the regional Help to Buy South website.

The council offers opportunities to help first-time buyers buy a home.

Cash incentive scheme

If you are a tenant of a housing association living in Bracknell Forest and you occupy a family-sized property, the council can offer you a grant of up to £60,000 to help you buy a property on the open market.

To be eligible for a grant you must:

  • have been a housing association tenant within Bracknell Forest for at least 2 years
  • have had a clear rent and council tax account for a least 6 months
  • have a local connection to the borough
  • be occupying a family-sized property
  • work full time or more than 16 hours per week and have an income of between £20,000 and £60,000
  • have a good credit history (subject to an Experian check)

The level of grant will depend on the property value, the mortgage offer amount and the savings that applicants have.

Shared ownership

Housing associations own a number of properties which can be purchased on a part rent/part buy basis. These are usually new build properties and are advertised on the BFC My Choice website. Shared ownership resales are also available.

Shared ownership enables home buyers to purchase a share in a property with their own deposit and mortgage, and pay rent on the share that they don’t own. The initial percentage share which can be purchased may range from 25% to 75%. Further shares can be purchased in instalments of 10% or more when the home owner can afford to do so.


The eligibility criteria for purchasing a shared ownership property may differ from scheme to scheme. However, the following criteria give an idea of what is required.

You must:

  • be a UK citizen
  • be in employment
  • earn between £20,000 and £60,000 per year (although some schemes require a minimum income of £26,000 per year)

If you are interested in shared ownership, you must be registered on BFC My Choice and with the regional Help to Buy Agent.

To find out more about how shared ownership works and what you may be able to afford, contact the Welfare and Housing Service.

Contact information

Welfare and Housing Service

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