When Sharon Burns decided to return to South Manchester to find a permanent place to live, she thought she had been priced out of the area. But Shared Ownership helped her find her forever home in a choice location at Minehead, Withington.
Having moved back to Manchester from Turkey to be closer to her family, Sharon’s six-month ‘temporary’ stay with a friend quickly stretched into four years. It was time to buy a place of her own and settle down.
“When I was married I’d lived in Chorlton”, she says, “but Chorlton was completely out of my price range”.
Fortunately a friend of Sharon’s lived close to Minehead Court, a new community of stylish two bedroom apartments in the heart of Withington. Impressed by the community café, health services, and that the flats had all the latest eco-features and double-glazing, she suggested Sharon take a look at the show apartment.
Reluctantly at first, Sharon agreed. “I’d never lived in a flat before, I’ve always lived in a house. What if I didn’t get on with the neighbours? I was just a bit unsure.”
“But I walked into the show apartment and just thought, ‘Wow! I absolutely love it!’”
Sharon contacted Gecko Homes, the company behind the community development, to find out about the benefits of Shared Ownership. With Gecko’s helpful, simple, and personal approach it wasn’t long before Sharon became the proud owner of her very own Minehead apartment.
“It’s one of the best moves I’ve ever made. I absolutely love it.”
Sharon was impressed by the modern convenience of the new-build flat. “I’ve always lived in old Victorian terraces where there’s always something needed doing. So it’s lovely just to walk in. I’ve got everything new.”
With older housing notorious for expensive energy bills, Sharon has found that Minehead’s double-glazed eco homes were much more affordable to heat and maintain. “I moved in in September,” says Sharon. “I’ve had my heating on for about an hour the whole time. It’s so warm.”
“I’ve got three grown up daughters and they live in Stretford and I can get on that tram, and Chorlton’s only two stops so I can see friends there.”
As for the noise she was concerned about; “It’s tucked away and it’s so quiet. You just don’t hear anybody.”
Some worry that buying a home through shared ownership can be stressful, “But there was no stress at all”, says Sharon, “Gecko were really helpful. And shared ownership is easy. They gave a list of solicitors who deal with shared ownership.
I’m just really pleased with the whole experience of it all. And I feel settled. This feels like it could be my forever home. I’ll always have a bit of wanderlust in me but I’m just happy now!”
Welcome home Sharon!
For more information about Gecko Homes, Shared Ownership, and the homes currently available, visit www.geckohomes.co.uk, or get in touch on 0330 995 1333.