"I knew straight away that Shared Ownership was right for me"

“I knew straight away that Shared Ownership was right for me – I couldn’t have got onto the property ladder without it” – first-time buyer finds a home in North London at Notting Hill Genesis’ Heron Quarter at Woodberry Down

Ryan on his balcony at Heron Quarter

  • Ryan, 38, one-bedroom apartment at Heron Quarter at Woodberry Down
  • Purchase price: £107,500 (25 per cent share of £430,000)
  • Deposit amount: £20,000
  • Service charge: £182 per month
  • Monthly costs: Mortgage – £382; Rent - £739; Service charge - £182

Ryan Johnson, 38, moved into Notting Hill Genesis’ Heron Quarter at Woodberry Down in March 2022.  He bought a 25 per cent share of his one-bedroom apartment for £107,500 through the Shared Ownership scheme, which offers first-time buyers a more accessible route onto the property ladder.

Ryan had grown tired of nearly a decade of renting in Kentish Town and decided that now was the time to put down roots in north London and purchase his own home.  

“My brother told me about Shared Ownership, and I got to researching straight away – I wondered why I hadn’t gone down this route years ago!  Notting Hill Genesis really stood out to me, and Heron Quarter at Woodberry Down quickly became the obvious choice as I wanted to stay in north London.”  After visiting the development, Ryan immediately knew he had found his future home.   

Through Shared Ownership, first-time buyers can purchase a home by buying a share of a property’s full market value and paying a subsidised rent on the remaining share.  In doing so, they can purchase a home with a much lower deposit than if they were to buy the property outright. 

Idyllic green living without compromising on commute time

One of the UK’s largest regeneration projects, Woodberry Down is home to 15 acres of parkland, and 42 acres of open water across two former reservoirs.  With local parks nearby too, it was the perfect setting for Ryan to enjoy his active lifestyle without being too far from the city.  “The layout of the development is so well done with the green space and the West Reservoir right in the middle – I love going for runs around Finsbury Park too, which takes less than five minutes for me to reach.”

Ryan in the communal garden at Heron Quarter

Ryan, a facilities manager for a chartered accountacy, commutes into his office at Chancery Lane every day.  Finding a home with quick links into the city was top of his priority list.  “I love living in north London because of the transport connections.  Manor House station is walking distance, then I’m on the Piccadilly line for about 30 minutes in total, which is perfect.”

Spacious design that chases the sun

Ryan’s one-bedroom apartment is centred around modern open-plan living, with high-quality features throughout.

Ryan in his kitchen

“It’s such a bright and airy space, and when I got my furniture in it felt even bigger.  Everything has been so well-considered, from useful amenities like the utility cupboard down to the layout of the apartment so the natural light moves through the property throughout the day.”

Ryan’s favourite part of his new home, however, is his private outdoor balcony, complete with panoramic views of the expansive green space.

Ryan on his balcony

“I love how spacious the balcony is, and I’m really looking forward to summer because it’s west facing.  I’m getting some garden furniture at the weekend, and I also want to get some outdoor plants so that my private space mirrors the natural element of the development.”  Heron Quarter is also home to a peaceful courtyard garden for residents to relax in and enjoy the outdoors.

Settling into the community at Woodberry Down

The community spirit at Woodberry Down hasn’t gone unnoticed by Ryan.  “There’s a real community feel across the development.  I joined a WhatsApp group when I moved here and it’s the most helpful group chat I’ve ever been part of.  The neighbours share all sorts of advice, from practical guidance on living here through to suggestions on interior decor.”

Having previously called Kentish Town home, Ryan is also enjoying exploring the diverse range of independent shops and cafes in North Hackney with friends and family.  “My mum came up last weekend and we explored the area

 together.  There’s so many eateries nearby.  My brother and I also enjoy The Naturalist pub which is right in the middle of the development and is so convenient if we want to stay a bit closer to home.”

Honest advice and high quality service from Notting Hill Genesis

Ryan on his laptop while relaxing in the living room.

As a first-time buyer, Ryan credits the Notting Hill Genesis’ sales team for their great customer service, and straightforward guidance on Shared Ownership.  “The sales team were brilliant, and so patient with me with all my questions.  They were completely honest about the specifics of Shared Ownership and the process of buying through the scheme – I had the space I needed to make the decision on whether it was right for me.”


Homes at Heron Quarter at Woodberry Down are available through Shared Ownership, with prices for a two-bedroom starting from £155,000 for a 25% share.


Discover Heron Quart at Woodberry Down


You can read more case studies here.