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22Oct92 UK: SHARED OWNERSHIP 'BAD NEWS TO BUILDERS'.

A campaign to encourage home ownership will divert resources into secondhand homes and not produce work for builders.The Government's do-it-yourself shared ownership (Diy-so) scheme allows a housing association or council tenant to buy a home by taking out a mortgage on half its value.The council or association buys the other half for which the occupant pays rent and can later increase the proportion they own.But Greg Lomax, deputy chief executive of the Housing Corporation, told a conference in London that it was 'bad news for builders because it does not entail building new properties.'The Diyso programme is small so far, taking only £80 million next year, but Mr Lomax made it clear that the scheme is to expand - from 116 homes this year to nearly 5,000 next with further growth likely.Mr Lomax said: 'Diyso is very popular with the Housing Corporation because there is very little risk.'Launching the campaign on Monday, housing ministry Sir George Young argued that Diyso would allow builders to offload unsold homes.He said: 'If they are still trying to sell, this presents a new range of customers to the builder. They will no longer be confined to people who need a mortgage.'Barratt London has already produced an incentive package for Diyso buyers.But Sir George admitted that funds would be diverted from new build to the secondhand market.The Housing Corporation is still hoping to hold the Government to its election promise to put £2,000 million into social housing next year.Mr Lomax said there were signs that shared ownership was less likely to be hit by spending cuts than new build.