L&Q at Lexington Gardens, London Living Rent Eoin (1) L&Q at Lexington Gardens, London Living Rent Eoin (1)

Planning for the future: Eoin’s London Living Rent story with L&Q in Nine Elms

Sixteen years ago, Eoin, a Town Planner, relocated to London from Ireland, calling the capital home ever since.

Privately renting across the city throughout this period, he lived everywhere from Earlsfield, Wapping and Arsenal, before finding stability sharing with a friend whom he lived with for eight years.

He explains; “My friend and I had originally discussed getting a joint mortgage to buy together, but it fell through. Her decision to move back home to Australia coincided with my partner, Osvaldo, moving from the US to London, so it felt like the right time to consider my living situation. As someone in their 40s who didn’t own my property, I was thinking ‘where do I go from here?’

“I saw a piece on the news about the London Living Rent scheme. I had heard a bit about it through my job, but I never thought it would be for me – I wasn’t very hopeful at that time that I’d ever find something suitable that would mean I could get onto the property ladder.”

From doing research, Eoin and Osvaldo learnt that London Living Rent (LLR) would enable the couple to rent a home at a discounted price, whilst saving towards a deposit. Tenants must have a maximum household of £60,000 or under, which would qualify Eoin and Osvaldo for the scheme under a joint application.

“We were trying not to get our hopes up too much!” Eoin comments. “We knew LLR must be very competitive, and I never thought we’d get through the process. It was only when we had completed our joint application with L&Q, both gone through the eligibility checks and been qualified that I believed it was really happening! I feel very fortunate – as a middle earner I thought that I would fall between the criteria for any support, but London Living Rent changed that.”

Reflecting on their experience with L&Q, Eoin says, “We found the communication with L&Q positive – whenever we sent anything over, we got a response quickly within a day or two. I was paying the rent for two people at my old place, which was very unaffordable, so it was important that the process was swift.”

Eoin and Osvaldo moved into their new two-bedroom apartment at L&Q at Lexington Gardens in October 2023, with their Australian rescue dog, Bowie. Speaking about what drew them to the Nine Elms development, Eoin explains, “The whole viewing process was beautiful. We went in very open-minded, but to be honest, I wasn’t expecting very much. However, we were both very happy and pleasantly surprised with the standard and knew we would definitely be taking it!

“From cycling through town to work, I was aware of development in Nine Elms, but thought that it must all be luxury housing. I was amazed that L&Q had LLR properties right there in Zone 1. L&Q at Lexington Gardens is located close to Battersea Power Station, which has become a real destination for the area. I grew up living near a river so that was a big bonus for me to have proximity to the Thames and the nature of Battersea Park. There’s plenty to do within walking distance and we can also easily get into town on foot, bike or via the Northern Line on the Underground.”

Commenting on how the scheme has worked for them, Eoin says, “The assured shorthold tenancy of three years means that the pressure is off. In my last private rental, I was in a rolling contract and the way that London rents are at the moment, I was getting to the stage of struggling financially. Being LLR tenants allows us to think about putting money aside for a deposit – we managed to save £600 just last month, which neither of us have been able to do before.”

One key benefit to renting an LLR home is that you can go on to purchase your home, subject to affordability, saving at your own pace. Tenants have the choice of purchasing a home through Shared Ownership, or a market sale property – they could even buy the home they are renting.

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“It has also enabled us both to look at expanding our careers,” Eoin adds. “Previously, I was hesitant to look for other jobs and I was stuck in the middle ground of thinking that I wouldn’t get a mortgage for the open market. But I’ve been able to move jobs and am definitely feeling more stable – that’s exactly how the London Living Rent scheme works.

“As we continue to meet our saving goals, we’re hoping to look at getting onto the property ladder in three years’ time. It’s early days, but we’re very happy.”

All applicants over the age of 18 must undertake a financial assessment to confirm their affordability and eligibility for the London Living Rent scheme. Should your household circumstances change at any stage during the application process or throughout your tenancy, you may be required to undertake a further financial assessment to ensure your household meets the London Living Rent eligibility criteria.

For more information about the London Living Rent scheme and eligibility requirements for single of joint applications, visit: https://lqhomes.com/renting-with-lq/london-living-rent/.

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