Shared ownership units fail to sell at Woolwich estate redevelopment

An application has been made to loosen restrictions on rule surrounding the sale of shared ownership homes at a redeveloped estate in Woolwich after they failed to sell.

Homes on the former Connaught estate were limited to those in Greenwich borough but have seen slow take up. It’s not that there isn’t strong demand for housing in Greenwich borough, but are the right homes being provided. Prices are all too often just too high for local people. These homes are on the site of a former estate that mainly comprised of social housing. As part of a project to demolish three estates comprising around 1,000 social homes, 1,600 homes are being built of which 35 per cent are “affordable” including shared ownership. Prices at Connaught in this application to vary terms range from £335,000 for a 1-bed flat to £525,000 for a 3-bed flat.

The development is from Lovell Homes with PA Housing administering the “affordable” homes. They now seek to increase income thresholds to £90,000 and widen those who apply across London.

New Woolwich estate project

Connaught – or trinity Walk as it’s now rebranded – is just the first estate. Morris Walk is another and then Maryon Grove will follow. Shared ownership is a component of the schemes, and has come under the spotlight recently due to rent and service charges payable in addition to a mortgage. Service charges have often increased way above inflation. I’ve been hearing of various increases this month at other projects in Woolwich amounting to 50 per cent increases on the year before. It’s a topic I’ll look into in future. If you are seeing this, email fromthemurkydepths@gmail.com

Back in 2017 when work was underway on first building the new estate, I noted that removing nearly 1,000 homes (of which many were social housing) for 35 per cent of 1,600 homes was a major net loss in social homes. The Greenwich council leader then appeared to confuse affordable and social housing in a comment. “Affordable” can now include rents at up to 80 per cent market rates (which in parts of London is still extremely expensive) and shared ownership can include a myriad of fees and charges.

A few years later and those “affordable” homes are beyond the reach of people in the borough. The numbers of people in emergency or temporary housing has increased above 1,400 costing the authority and taxpayers millions in unbudgeted costs, and the overall housing waiting list is up to 23,000.

 

 

 

 

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John Smith

I've lived in south east London most of my life growing up in Greenwich borough and working in the area for many years. The site has contributors on occasion and we cover many different topics. Living and working in the area offers an insight into what is happening locally.

6 thoughts on “Shared ownership units fail to sell at Woolwich estate redevelopment

  • March 26, 2021 at 6:50 pm
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    I live in Trinity Walk, and I can honestly say, the flats in this development are waaaaay over-priced! I am gutted every time I think about how people are being screwed.
    I honestly do not know how anyone can afford to live here…likely it’s because the gutter is no option.

    Reply
  • March 26, 2021 at 7:04 pm
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    I live in Trinity Walk and there is a huge difference between the private and ‘affordable rent’ blocks unfortunately. The private blocks are a reasonable price in comparison to other blocks in Woolwich and South East London in general. I can’t speak for the Shared Ownership part. Unfortunately the ‘affordable rent’ blocks don’t seem to be the nicest places to live.

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  • March 28, 2021 at 8:27 pm
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    £355K gets you a 50 sqm 1 bed flat at Trinity Walk – or a 75sqm 2 bed maisonette with large garden and £40k change on a nearby council estate, where the architecture and build quality are better. Paul is right. Lovell are taking the piss.

    Reply
  • March 29, 2021 at 9:15 pm
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    Funny enough, Trinity Walk is literally the cheapest new build development in the area compare to others such as The Wellington or Royal Arsenal. So your article should probably point to those as well, as they do literally nothing to help the local who has lower affordability. I mean we talk about 450K for 1bed 50SQM as a starting price.

    And TBH, not sure why you protect so much of the ex council estate, the previous development was literally shit hole with gangster and drug dealer ( ask anyone who lived here before you will get the same answer, even the plumber who came to fix stuff in my flat told me how much he surprised that the area has changed ). If anything, Lovell is doing good for Woolwich by replacing it with better development and brings lots of young professional into the area. Yes , I understand some of the ex local won’t be able to afford to live here, but that is not Lovell’s fault. It’s not like other housing is still cheap. Literally everywhere in Woolwich is going up in price, so it’s just a matter of time. Check the house price in the area now, you are actually lucky to get 350K for 1 bedroom new build right now, not just Woolwich but for the whole of London. And eventually all other council estate will face the same fate sooner or later.

    I’m not saying the price make sense. But to point out it is a company who build the cheapest development in the area fault make absolutely no sense. And even so, some of those who live in this so called ‘affordable rent’ are not the nicest people on earth. So much of littering and anti social behaviour issue that the management company has to solved.

    Some people complaint it’s expensive here, yet they don’t go elsewhere only because it’s more expensive in other places as well. So who to blame? If 75SQM maisonette can give you so much space and value, then why don’t you buy it there? Why stick to this place? Or it’s just because that doesn’t actually exist without moving further out? It’s not like this specific piece of land is so special or something. Sorry for the rant, but i never understand these kind of complaint whatsoever.

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  • March 31, 2021 at 4:03 am
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    Could you share a link to this? I had a look on rightmove for 2 beds in Woolwich and sorting by lowest price the cheapest I can see is a 2 bed flat in the RA for £425k but no maisonettes with gardens for 355….
    I live in Trinity Walk and I do think the build quality is good. It’s one of the cheapest new build developments in London, there are a few cheaper ones in Beckton and Thamesmead but we were lured by the promise of crossrail!

    Reply
  • March 31, 2021 at 4:06 am
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    I replied to the comment by Jonathanblower BTW

    Reply

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