Ipswich Building Society has launched a shared ownership mortgage for consumers with lifelong disabilities.
The scheme – which is part of the Suffolk Home Ownership for Long-term Disabilities initiative – has been launched in conjunction with Suffolk County Council, Saffron Housing Trust and Orwell Housing Association.
The houses will be provided by Saffron Housing Trust and Orwell Housing, while Ipswich Building Society will provide the mortgage and Suffolk County Council will identify suitable applicants and provide an underpinning guarantee.
The first people to benefit from the scheme will be adults with learning disabilities.
Paul Winter, chief executive of Ipswich Building Society, says: “We are absolutely delighted to be part of the Suffolk HOLD scheme.
“We firmly believe that everybody should have the right to own their own home no matter the circumstances, and this scheme is a great example of how local organisations can come together to support a vulnerable part of society.”
Councillor Colin Noble, Suffolk County Council’s portfolio holder for adult and community services, says: “I am so delighted that Suffolk is leading the way in providing this fantastic opportunity to members of our community who would otherwise be disadvantaged.
“Getting onto the housing ladder is hard enough without having a lifelong disability, so to be able to offer increased independence to those who would normally struggle to purchase their own home really is something spectacular.”
The scheme will be supported by an independent deputy who will be assigned to make sure that the applicant’s best interests have been fully assessed in the decision to purchase her or his home. The deputy can then sign the mortgage contract on behalf of those individuals who may be unable to do so due to their disability.