After renting for several years, John and his wife, Scarlett, knew they wanted to get onto the property ladder but weren’t sure that they could afford to buy on the open market. A conversation with Scarlett’s brother had sparked their interest in Shared Ownership. John says:


“We’d been renting in Billericay for about five years. We had a nice place, just five minutes from the high street, but it was always at the back of our minds that we wanted to own a property. I was speaking to my brother-in-law last Christmas and he was telling me about how he was looking into Help to Buy, and suggested that I look at other alternative home ownership schemes.”


John and Scarlett have purchased a 25% share of a two bedroom coach house through L&Q’s Shared Ownership scheme at Beaulieu, Chelmsford.


John explains how the couple knew immediately that Beaulieu was right for them: “We came across Beaulieu on the L&Q website and there actually weren’t any properties available at the time, so we drove up there and had a look around ourselves, and we absolutely fell in love with it. A couple of months later, the next phase was released and we went to view a two bedroom house, but unfortunately didn’t get allocated a property. We didn’t want to give up on Beaulieu, so we waited for the next phase and went to view again a few months later.”

“This time, we went and viewed the property on the Friday and by the Monday we were told it was ours! Happily, the house we were offered was actually the show home that we’d viewed a few days before, which meant we didn’t have to buy off-plan and knew exactly what we were getting.”


“The sales team at L&Q were really helpful – I spoke to a sales rep every day and she would let me know what was happening and how the process was going. She even offered to put us in touch with a financial advisor, who would come to our house to do the financial interview.”

Delighted with their new home, John describes what drew him to Beaulieu:

“What really stood out, apart from the actual house, was the sense of community. There’s already a new community centre, new shops, a lovely nursery – where Scarlett works – and there is talks of a restaurant coming soon. There is also 180 acres of open space at Beaulieu and great transport links to London – what more could you ask for?”


“We get two allocated parking spaces at Beaulieu, which you don’t always find with other Shared Ownership homes, and there’s loads of parking across the entire site – perfect for when guests come over. My favourite part of the house is the open-plan living and kitchen area; it’s modern and bright. That’s definitely where I spend most of my time!”

Looking to the future, John and Scarlett know they’ll be at Beaulieu for the long-term: “We love the stability of owning our own home. It feels like we have more control, and there’s a sense that we’re putting down roots in a community, rather than just jumping around rental properties.”


“Our aim is to ultimately buy more shares, hopefully within the next two years. We’ve definitely put down roots here – you never really feel  100% that you “belong” when you’re renting, but I can tell, that we’ll still be here in 10 or 20 years time. If we ever decided to move, we’ll definitely stay in Beaulieu!”