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Help to Buy for people with disabilities

This content applies to England

How the Help to Buy (formerly HomeBuy) shared ownership scheme can help people with long-term disabilities to buy a home suitable for their needs. The scheme is known as HOLD - Home Ownership for People with Long-Term Disabilities.

People with long-term support needs or disabilities may need to live in a specific type of property or location. To meet their housing requirements, the Government allows for homes to be selected on the open market, purchased by a private registered provider of social housing (PRPSH) and sold to the individual on shared ownership terms.

How the scheme works

HOLD operates in much the same way as the Help to Buy shared ownership scheme, except that it is designed to assist people with a long-term disability to purchase a home suitable for their needs, where such properties are not already being developed by PRPSHs. Applicants seek a suitable property on the open market; the PRPSH buys the property and then grants a leasehold interest to the applicant/shared owner. The applicant needs to raise the funds to purchase her/his share through savings or by taking out a mortgage from a qualifying lender.

The HOLD scheme has the same features as the standard Help to Buy shared ownership scheme, such as staircasing opportunities. However, because the PRPSH has not developed the property as part of its Help to Buy shared ownership development, there is an opportunity to offer, and include in the lease, an optional repairs and maintenance service paid for by the leaseholder.

There are variations in how the scheme operates in different areas. For full information and details the applicant should contact the Help to buy agent responsible for the relevant area.

For further information on how the scheme operates, including how to apply, see the Help to Buy shared ownership page.

Who can apply

HOLD is aimed at people who have:

  • long-term mental health issues
  • learning difficulties
  • physical disabilities.

Security of tenure

A person who buys a share of her/his home through HOLD is a combination of assured tenant and long leaseholder (see the section on Assured tenancies for more information). The landlord retains the freehold of the property. The shared owner occupies the entire dwelling and pays a rent to the PRPSH for the share of the property still owned by the PRPSH. See the Home ownership section for information on the rights and responsibilities of owner-occupiers.


The information on this page applies only to England. Go to Shelter Cymru for information relating to Wales.

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