Caroline, 71, is recently retired and bought a two bedroom home at Pennington Wharf, Leigh.
“My husband and I sold our house in 2007, we’d always been homeowners. We made the decision to sell our property as we considered moving abroad but decided to rent in the mean time. We rented on Wigan Lane for nine years. However in January 2016 my husband sadly died and I was left in a precarious position, not knowing quite what to do.
“Peter, my son, heard about Plumlife online and started looking into shared ownership. At the same time I was struggling with the rent for my house and wanted a cheaper alternative. Peter lives in Hindley Green and noticed there were homes for sale at Pennington Wharf, a new shared ownership development in Leigh, which is just over two miles away. This seemed like the perfect solution, I’d be close to my family and live on a semi rural scheme close to countryside.
“I was concerned that because I’d been a homeowner I wouldn’t qualify for shared ownership, however Annette, my Plumlife sales advisor explained that because I’d sold my home and was now renting I would be a good candidate.
“My route to home ownership took three months in total, which I was impressed with. It started after I made an appointment with Annette and went along for a viewing in late January. I immediately liked Pennington Wharf, the site was picturesque and it looked out onto green open spaces. I could see building work was underway at the proposed community centre and was told there were also plans for a marina and a cafe. The show home was bright, sunny and included lots of modern fitted appliances.
“Annette was really helpful and talked me through every step of the process. The two-bedroom house was priced at £135,000 and I paid £47,250 in cash towards it. As a shared ownership customer this means I have a 35% share of my home. I pay a small monthly rent of £201 on the 65% share I don’t yet own.
“I’m so glad I went ahead and bought a home at Pennington Wharf. It’s quiet, close to some great walks along the canal and Pennington Flash Country Park and just a short drive to Leigh town centre for all my essentials. We even have a bus stop right outside the development, which is perfect for day trips!
“I would recommend shared ownership as a viable option for retired, single people of all ages. It’s been ideal for me as it’s so much more cost effective than renting a big house and it’s so convenient. I’ve now have a home of my own near my family and close to some wonderful walks."